Positive move says RCM on HEE maternity support worker funding announcement

on 15 July 2020 Midwives RCM Midwifery Maternity Services NHS Staff MSWs - Maternity Support Workers MSW advocates

“A timely reflection on the value of maternity support workers (MSWs)”. That is the Royal College of Midwives’ (RCM) reaction to the launch of Health Education England’s (HEE) £1 million fund for MSW education and training, something the RCM has long been campaigning for.

The HEE fund is to support the delivery of HEE’s National MSW competence, education, and career framework, which the RCM has been instrumental in developing. Local maternity services can apply for funding to cover the costs of work, such as reviewing their current maternity support workforce and assessing their training needs.

Keelie Barrett, an MSW and member of the RCM Board, said: “MSWs play such an important role in our maternity services, caring for women, babies and their families and supporting midwives. Today’s announcement reflects that value and will make a big difference to those looking to expand their knowledge and experience further.”

Birte Harlev-Lam, the RCM’s Executive Director for Professional Leadership, added: “MSWs are often the unsung heroes of maternity care, but this announcement underlines just how crucial they are. This is another positive move to support their education, training, and competencies. We have a national framework for their training, we now need to see services across the country using and implementing it.”


To contact the RCM media office call 020 7312 3456 or email [email protected].

Notes to Editors

For more information about the HEE fund visit  https://www.hee.nhs.uk/news-blogs-events/news/£1m-funding-available-boost-delivery-hee-national-maternity-support-worker-competence-education.

For information about MSWs visit https://www.rcm.org.uk/promoting/learning-careers/become-maternity-support-worker/.

The RCM Position Statements on Maternity Support Workers can be read at https://www.rcm.org.uk/media/2303/maternity-support-workers.pdf and https://www.rcm.org.uk/media/2338/role-responsibilities-maternity-support-workers.pdf.

The RCM’s guidance on pay banding and job evaluation for MSWs is at https://www.rcm.org.uk/media/2339/msw-pay-banding-evaluation.pdf.

The RCM ‘Valuing Maternity Support Worker’ publication is at https://www.rcm.org.uk/media/2346/valuing-msws.pdf.  

For information about being a RCM MSW workplace advocate visit https://www.rcm.org.uk/influencing/activists/msw-advocates/.

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/.