Ms. Sheetal Sharma who will be graduating from Bournemouth University with a Ph.D. on November 10th has been awarded Bournemouth University’s The Postgraduate Research Prize. This prize is for the postgraduate student whose achievement is deemed by the Vice-Chancellor to have been most outstanding in their time at BU.
Sheetal stood out as a Ph.D. student as her maternal health research project in Nepal resulted in several many publications [1-6], some in very prestigious journals such as BMC Pregnancy & Childbirth  and PLOSOne  . She won the best poster prize at the international GLOW conference in Birmingham in 2013 with the poster presentation ‘Getting women to care in Nepal: A Difference in Difference analysis of a health promotion intervention’. She won a SBSP travel scholarship to present a poster at the 8th European Congress on Tropical Medicine & International Health in 2013 in Denmark. Sheetal’s abstract of the poster was also officially published .
Sheetal presented at the Science in Society conference (SiS) at Berkeley University in November 2012 where she received a Graduate Scholar Award. In addition, she won a Santander travel scholarships for £5,000 to learn about research at the University of Buenos Aires, Institute for Clinical Effectiveness & Health Policy (Argentina) and at the University of Barcelona in Spain. This scholarship resulted in a great publication with the world-famous researcher in reproductive health care prof. Jose Belizan as co-author. Sheetal also presented her work at the first ever national health promotion conference in Nepal.
Sheetal also had less academic achievements as she won the BU photo competition at the 2014 PGR conference with the photo in this blog.
Sheetal was also actively involved as a student representative in the Faculty of Health & Social Sciences as well as in the Graduate School. She even found time to join the editorial board of the newly formed Journal of Asian Midwives.
Over the past five years Sheetal has had many mentions on this BU research blog as one of BU’s most prolific publishing PhD students.
As supervisors and co-authors we are proud of her!
Dr. Catherine Angell, Prof. Vanora Hundley & Prof. Edwin van Teijlingen (CMMPH)
BU Visiting Professor Padam Simkhada, Liverpool John Moores University
Dr. Elisa Sicuri, Assistant Research Professor at ISGlobal, Spain
Prof. Jose Belizan, University of Buenos Aires, Argentina
References to published work by Sheetal Sharma:
- Joshi, R., Sharma, S., van Teijlingen, E. (2013) Improving neonatal health in Nepal: Major challenges to achieving Millennium Development Goal 4, Health Science Journal 7(3): 247-257. http://www.hsj.gr/index.files/Page1421.htm
- Sharma, S., Joshi, P., van Teijlingen, E. (2015) ‘Nepenglish’ or ‘Nepali English’: A new version of English? Asian Journal of Humanities & Social Sciences 4(2): 188-193. www.ajssh.leena-luna.co.jp/AJSSHPDFs/Vol.4%282%29/AJSSH2015%284.2-21%29.pdf
- Simkhada, B., Sharma, S., van Teijlingen, E., Silwal, RC, Simkhada, P. (2015) Exploring Maternal Mortality Reduction. In: Wasti, SP, Simkhada, PP, van Teijlingen, E. (Eds.) The Dynamics of Health in Nepal, Kathmandu: Social Science Baha & Himal Books: 95-121.
- Sharma, S., van Teijlingen, E., Belizán, J.M., Hundley, V., Simkhada, P., Sicuri, E. (2016) Measuring What Works: An impact evaluation of women’s groups on maternal health uptake in rural Nepal, PLOS One 11(5): e0155144 http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371%2Fjournal.pone.0155144
- Sharma, S., van Teijlingen, E., Hundley, V., Angell, C., Simkhada, P. (2016) Dirty and 40 days in the wilderness: Eliciting childbirth and postnatal cultural practices and beliefs in Nepal BMC Pregnancy & Childbirth 16: 147 https://bmcpregnancychildbirth.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/s12884-016-0938-4
- Sharma, S, Simkhada, P, Hundley, V, van Teijlingen E., Stephens, J, Silwal, RC, Angell, C (2017) Evaluating a Community Maternal Health Programme: Lessons Learnt. Journal Asian Midwives 4(1):3–20.
- Sharma, S., van Teijlingen, E., Hundley, V., Stephens J., Simkhada, P., Angell, C., Sicuri, E., Belizan, J.M. (2013) Mixed-methods evaluation of a maternity care intervention in rural Nepal: measuring what works, Poster P.2.3.004 (A), Tropical Medicine & International Health 18 (Suppl. 1): 108–231.
BU Ph.D. student and Consultant Midwife Kathryn Gutteridge and Hannah Dahlen Associate Professor of Midwifery at the University of Western Sydney contributed a chapter to the book ‘The Roar behind the Silence: Why kindness, compassion and respect matter in maternity care’. Kathryn Gutteridge and Hannah Dahlen wrote under the title ‘Stop the fear and embrace birth’. BU’s Dr. Jenny Hall also wrote a chapter called ‘Spirituality, compassion and maternity care’.
The volume edited by Sheena Byrom and Soo Downe was published this week by Pinter & Martin (London). I received my copy of the book yesterday, but didn’t have a chance to look at it until today. The Roar Behind the Silence is both a practical and inspirational book, which likely to be of interest to people working in maternity care (midwives, doctors, managers), local and regional maternity-care policy-makers as well as politicians and funders and, of course, to many pregnant women and maternity-care pressure groups. The book highlights examples of good practice, and offers practical tools for making change happen, advice on how to use evidence and real-life stories.
Prof. Edwin van Teijlingen
Dr Padam Simkhada, senior lecturer in ScHARR at the University of Sheffield was awarded the CEA Award of Global Health Research for his contribution to global research at a special ceremony at the Mahatma Gandhi University, India just before last Christmas. Dr Simkhada has been Visiting Faculty at BU in the School of Health & Social Care since 2010. He is involved in various BU projects, including the Fellowship awarded by the charity Wellbeing of Women, in association with the Royal College of Midwives (RCM), for research into Nepalese maternity services and women’s health from an international perspective. The research team consists of Lesley Milne, Senior Lecturer in Midwifery, Vanora Hundley, Professor in Midwifery, Edwin van Teijlingen, Professor of Reproductive Health Research at BU, and BU Visiting Faculty Dr. Padam Simkhada.
Dr. Simkhada is also co-supervisor of HSC PhD student Ms. Sheetal Sharma. Sheetal Sharma’s poster presentation recently won the best poster prize at a conference in Birmingham for the poster Getting women to care in Nepal: A Difference in Difference analysis of a health promotion intervention. Sheetal is supported by Bournemouth University with a studentship and a Santander grant.
Dr. Simkhada has published over 70 research articles on issues such as reproductive and sexual health, migration and sex trafficking and maternal and child health. Furthermore, he has been working to improve the quality of health research among higher education institutions in Nepal.
This Global Health Research Award for Dr. Simkhada has been reported widely in the media in India, Nepal and in England.
Prof. Edwin van Teijlingen
Centre for Midwifery, Maternal and Perinatal Health
First page of the paper
The paper ‘Risk, theory, social and medical models’ published in 2010 co-authored with Dr. Helen Bryers made it into the top ten most downloaded articles in the past 90 days from the journal Midwifery. See http://www.journals.elsevier.com/midwifery/most-downloaded-articles/
It is also in the top 12 most quoted papers published in Midwifery. This interesting as all 11 papers that have been cited more often are older, i.e. have been in print longer and therefore had more time to be cited.
The Abstract of the paper reads:
Background: there is an on-going debate about perceptions of risk and risk management in maternity care. Objectives: to provide a critical analysis of the risk concept, its development in modern society in general and UK maternity services in particular. Through the associated theory, we explore the origins of the current preoccupation with risk Using Pickstone’s historical phases of modern health care, the paper explores the way maternity services changed from a social to a medical model over the twentieth century and suggests that the risk agenda was part of this process. Key conclusions: current UK maternity services policy which promotes normality contends that effective risk management screens women suitable for birth in community maternity units (CMUs) or home birth: however, although current policy advocates a return to this more social model, policy implementation is slow in practice. Implications for practice: the slow implementation of current maternity policy in is linked to perceptions of risk. We content that intellectual and social capital remains within the medical model. © 2010 Elsevier Ltd.
Prof. Edwin van Teijlingen
Centre for Midwifery, Maternal & Perinatal Health
Open air focus group in rural Nepal, (c) Sheetal Sharma 2013.
Roosters crowing, cows mooing, bleating goats, birds chirping, mobile phones ringing, children screaming, laughing and running around while women, breastfeeding, talk over one another excitedly in the sun as they need to leave us soon to drop the children off to school and/or head to the field to cultivate the season’s crop this spring it is wheat, last summer, rice. Women do this work as most of their husbands are away in the capital, Kathmandu or in the Arab Gulf. This is the reality of conducting focus groups in rural Nepal.
Although we, as researchers, spend considerable time to perfect the ideal ‘tool’ of the interview schedule and imagine the transcription clear and the background; a researcher must be prepared for every eventuality. Noise, din and interruptions: Today a dog nibbled on a nearby goat and a few men kept creeping to listen in why was this videshi (foreigner) recording conversations and making notes. The women shooed them away as today was a discussion on contraception; also that the discussion of the focus groups should be in ‘controlled environment’, safe, quiet; and in Nepal where women are not the main decision-maker for their reproductive health, it should mean a lieu women should be able to discuss freely these issues. In this Green Tara’s (www.greentaratrust.com) intervention area, which my PhD, supervised at HSC BU by Catherine Angell, Vanora Hundley, Edwin van Teijlingen and University of Sheffield’s Padam Simkhada, aims to evaluate both quantitatively and qualitatively, shows one the decision-making outcomes improved: increased the use of contraception in the Pharping area from 4.3% (2008) to 24.6% (2012) after 5 years of health promotion conducted by two auxiliary nurse-midwives.
40 minutes later recording (with 2 digital recorders) and once the demographic data and recording is double-checked and any last questions answered we set off walking 2 hours downhill visiting a tea-shop on the way for a cup of chai.
Edwin van Teijlingen and Emma Pitchforth, Qualitative Research: Focus group research in family planning and reproductive health care J Fam Plann Reprod Health Care 2006;32:1 30-32doi:10.1783/147118906775275299