Breastfeeding impact: a five-paths approach

When mothers and babies discharge home from hospital feeding directly at the breast, it symbolises the quality of maternity care received during pregnancy, birth and early postnatal periods. This research program, the Pathways Approach to Breastfeeding, focusses on five key areas which are independently associated with feeding directly at the breast at hospital discharge.

Study 1 – Midwifery-led services and facilities: midwifery continuity of care: models of care for vulnerable families; health engagement; out-of-hospital birth.


Allen, J. et al. (2019). The impact of caseload midwifery compared to standard care on women’s perceptions of antenatal care quality: Survey results from the M@NGO randomised controlled trial for women of any risk. Birth: Issues in Perinatal Care, 46, 439-449. https://doi,org/10.1111/birt.12436

Kildea, S., Hickey, S., Barclay, L., Kruske, S., Nelson, C., Sherwood, J., Allen, J., et al. (2019). Implementing Birthing on Country services for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander families: RISE Framework. Women and Birth, 32(5), 466-475.

Allen, J., et al. (2017). The motivation and capacity to go ‘above and beyond’: Qualitative analysis of free-text survey responses in the M@NGO randomised controlled trial of caseload midwifery. Midwifery, 50, 148-156.

Tracy, S.K., Hartz, D.L., Tracy, M.B., Allen, J., et al. (2013). Caseload midwifery care versus standardmaternity care for women of any risk: M@NGO, a randomized controlled trial. The Lancet, 382(9906), 1723-1732.

Study 2 – Spontaneous onset of labour at term: early labour care; informed decision-making around induction of labour; strategies to increase the term birth rate.


Allen, J., Jenkinson B., Tracy, S., Tracy, M., Hartz, D., Kildea, S. (2020). Women’s unmet needs in early labour: Qualitative analysis of free-text survey responses in the M@NGO trial of caseload midwifery. Midwifery, 88, 102751.

Williams, L., Jenkinson, B., Lee, N., Gao, Y., Allen, J., et al. (2020). Does introducing a dedicated early labour area improve birth outcomes? A pre-post intervention study. Women and Birth, 33(3), 259-264.

Allen, J., et al. (2016). How optimal caseload midwifery can modify predictors for preterm birth inyoung women: integrated findings from a mixed methods study. Midwifery, 41, 30-38.

Study 3 –  Non-pharmacological analgesia: warm water immersion and water birth.


Allen, J., Gao, Y., Dahlen, H., Reynolds, M., Beckmann, M., Cooper, C., & Kildea, S. (under review). Women with uncomplicated pregnancies who intend waterbirth, compared to non-waterbirth, at onset of second stage labour: a feasibility cohort study.

Study 4 – Spontaneous vaginal birth: hands-poised for birth; upright birth positions; and non-directed pushing.


Allen, J., Small, K., & Lee, N. (under review). The impact of the perineal bundle on Australian hospital midwifery practice: a critical thematic analysis.

Study 5 – Optimising mother-baby interaction: first hour after birth; skin-to-skin contact; and baby-led breastfeeding.


Allen, J., Parratt, J., Rolfe, M., Hastie, C., Sexton, A., & Fahy, K. (2019). Immediate, uninterrupted skin-to-skin contact and breastfeeding after birth: A cross-sectional electronic survey. Midwifery, 79, 102535.

O’Connor, M., Allen, J., et al. (2018). Predictors of breastfeeding exclusivity and duration in a hospital without Baby Friendly Hospital Initiative accreditation: A prospective cohort study. Women and Birth, 31(4),319-432.

Research by higher degree student projects:

Routine postdates induction of labour: critical discourse analysis – Primary Supervisor

Interventions to improve women’s experience of abortion care: mixed methods – Associate Supervisor

Shared decision-making in maternity care: mixed methods- Associate Supervisor

Lead: Dr Jyai Allen