Midwives welcome Labour commitment for more midwives

on 13 November 2019 Student midwives Student attrition Bursaries and Scholarships Midwife Shortage Maternity Unit Closures Maternal Mental health Perinatal Mental Health Brexit

The Shadow Secretary of State for Health Johnathan Ashworth today launched the Labour 'NHS Rescue Plan'. Speaking at the launch of the plan he used the closure of a maternity unit because of a shortage of midwives to confirm that Labour would reintroduce bursaries for student midwives, nurses and other health professionals. He also said Labour would produce a 'credible plan for more midwives'.

Commenting on the announcement Jon Skewes, Executive Director for External Relations at the Royal College of Midwives, said; "These are welcome commitments. They acknowledge the serious shortage of midwives in England's NHS and the hardships faced by our student midwives to make ends meet. It is important though that any commitment to more midwives translates quickly into more midwives on the ground and working in our hard-pressed NHS maternity services.

"The RCM also welcomes the promise to remove bureaucratic hurdles to the NHS recruiting midwives from the EU even if the UK does leave. We look forward to going through what all parties will be offering as and when they produce their plans.”

The RCM's General Election manifesto was published last week. It's asks include the return of the student midwife training bursary, reviewing funding for maternity services and improving care for women with mental health issues during and after pregnancy. More information on the RCM's Manifesto can be viewed at https://www.rcm.org.uk/media-releases/2019/november/rcm-launches-its-manifesto-for-the-2019-uk-general-election/.  


To contact the RCM Media Office call 020 7312 3456, or email [email protected]

Notes to editors

The RCM is the only trade union and professional association dedicated to serving midwifery and the whole midwifery team. We provide workplace advice and support, professional and clinical guidance and information, and learning opportunities with our broad range of events, conferences and online resources. For more information visit the RCM website at https://www.rcm.org.uk/.