Eliminating weight stigma in prenatal health care: Development of sensitivity training modules for prenatal care providers

As obesity (body mass index [BMI] >=30.0kg/m2) increases, there is also an increased risk for experiencing weight stigma (WS). WS is defined as having negative attitudes towards individuals because of weight. WS experienced in health care settings may cause poor communication with physicians, and negative health outcomes. A population that may experience WS are pregnant women who have a BMI >=40.0kg/m2 (high level of obesity). To prevent WS during pregnancy, health care providers may need sensitivity training. The proposed project will develop and test a sensitivity module for prenatal health care providers. A obstetrician will take the sensitivity training and deliver a appointment for pregnant woman, while we measure their response by questionnaires, interviews and heart rate monitoring to determine the importance of sensitive communication. The women will inform us how we can improve the sensitivity module. The updated module will be delivered to health care providers who are members of The Society of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists of Canada (SOGC). Health care providers will complete a questionnaire right after finishing the module and one month later, to determine if the module improved sensitivity in their practice. Finally, the module will be updated and made available to all SOGC clinicians.

Faculty Supervisor:

Kristi Adamo


Taniya Singh Nagpal


The Society of Obstetricians and Gynecologists of Canada




Professional, scientific and technical services


University of Ottawa



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