Developing a web-based toolkit for new mothers about postpartum pelvic floor health in collaboration with a professional medical association
Background: Few electronic resources are available for new mothers with concerns about changes in their pelvic floorfollowing childbirth. Patients may struggle when seeking authoritative information regarding pelvic floor conditions online given the sensitivity of the topic as well as the inadvertent connection to obscene or demeaning content found online. A health sciences librarian partnered with the Motherhood and Pelvic Health Study, an interdisciplinary research group, to provide expert searching skills for a particularly challenging health condition that patients struggle to find useful information on.
Case Presentation:A custom rubric was developed to evaluate existing information products, which included criteria for cultural sensitivity, conflicts of interest, and other red flags. This evaluation process enabled the research team to identify top-tier evidence-based materials that were culturally congruent. This collaborative evaluation process led to the creation of a web-based toolkit resource for new mothers concerned about changes in their pelvic floor. The toolkit connects women to pertinent information on a national health organization’s patient portal, supplemented by videos created by the team to serve as models of communication for women and health care providers.
Conclusion:When developing a web-based resource, health sciences libraries can partner with research teams to find, evaluate, and disseminate information. Culturally congruent toolkits such as this one can improve access to health information and lead to improved health outcomes. To ensure that the information highlighted in toolkits is both culturally congruent and authoritative, research teams should form advisory committees and partner with relevant professional medical associations.
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