Assertiveness and problem solving in midwives

Zeliha Burcu Yurtsal, Levent Özdemir


Background: Midwifery profession is required to bring solutions to problems and a midwife is expected to be an assertive person and to develop midwifery care. This study was planned to examine the relationship between assertiveness and problem‑solving skills of midwives.

Materials and Methods: This cross‑sectional study was conducted with 201 midwives between July 2008 and February 2009 in the city center of Sivas. The Rathus Assertiveness Schedule (RAS) and Problem Solving Inventory (PSI) were used to determine the level of assertiveness and problem‑solving skills of midwives. Statistical methods were used as mean, standard deviation, percentage, Student’s T, ANOVA and Tukey HSD, Kruskal Wallis, Fisher Exact, Pearson Correlation and Chi‑square tests and P < 0.05.

Results: The RAS mean scores and the PSI mean scores showed statistically significant differences in terms of a midwife’s considering herself as a member of the health team, expressing herself within the health care team, being able to say “no” when necessary, cooperating with her colleagues, taking part in problem‑solving skills training. A statistically significant negative correlation was found between the RAS and PSI scores.The RAS scores decreased while the problem‑solving scores increased (r: ‑0451, P < 0.01).

Conclusions: There were significant statistical differences between assertiveness levels and problem solving skills of midwives, and midwives who were assertive solved their problems better than did others. Assertiveness and problem‑solving skills training will contribute to the success of the midwifery profession. Midwives able to solve problems, and display assertive behaviors will contribute to the development of midwifery profession.



Assertiveness; midwifery; midwives; problem solving inventory; problem solving; rathus assertiveness schedule

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