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Giving birth at home or in midwife led unit as safe as hospital say midwives on NICE guidance supporting more midwife-led care

Giving birth at home or in midwife led unit as safe as hospital say midwives on NICE guidance supporting more midwife-led care

Tuesday, 13th May 2014
 
Tomorrow (Tuesday, 13th May 2014) the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) publish draft guidance advocating more midwife-led care and choice for women about where they give birth. The draft guidance also updates current recommendations on umbilical cord clamping.
 
Commenting on the draft guidance, Cathy Warwick, chief executive of the Royal College of Midwives, said: “ We certainly welcome the change in guidance. The evidence shows that for low risk women giving birth in a midwife-led unit or at home is safe, indeed, may be safer than hospital. Women also tend to have higher satisfaction rates and a better birth experience when giving birth in these environments.
 
 
“The Government have stressed that women should have a choice about where they give birth. It is at the heart of their maternity strategy and too often this choice is denied to women. To achieve this a number of things have to happen. The choices recommended by NICE have to be commissioned at a local level by clinical commissioning groups. There also has to be more investment in midwife-led care, in midwife-led units and in home births. Additionally, we need to ensure that midwives being trained get jobs when they qualify so that we have the right number of midwives to deliver these services.  It is then that a choice that exists in theory will become a choice that exists in reality for all women.
 
“The RCM is also supportive of the NICE guidance on cord clamping. Again, it is ultimately about choice for the woman and her choice should be respected and supported.”
 
For further information please contact the RCM Press Office on 020 7312 3456, pressofficer@rcm.org.uk
 
Ends
 
 
Notes to editors
 
The Royal College of Midwives is the voice of midwifery. We are the UK’s only trade union and professional organisation led by midwives for midwives. The vast majority of the midwifery profession are our members. The RCM promotes midwifery, quality maternity services and professional standards. We support and represent our members individually and collectively in all four UK countries.  We influence on behalf of our members and for the interests of the women and families for which they care.