RCM calls for pandemic lessons to be learnt

on 01 October 2020 RCM Midwives Pregnancy Women Midwifery covid-19

The Royal College of Midwives (RCM) is calling for lessons to be learned from the pandemic as the country enters the second phase, responding to a report from the Health and Social Care Committee. 

Gill Walton, Chief Executive of the RCM, said: “COVID-19 has revealed the endemic lack of investment, resources and adequate staffing across our maternity services and wider NHS. It has also starkly exposed the significant inequalities within our society, shown by the disproportionate impact of the virus on our black, Asian and minority ethnic staff and users of the NHS. While none of us has a crystal ball, the inability by the Government to pre-empt and address the need to keep staff safe, highlighted by the problems around access to PPE and the ongoing issues around Test and Trace, reveals glaring problems in planning. 


“It is critical now, as we enter the second phase of the pandemic, that all the lessons from the past six months are learned, and steps taken to ensure we do not face those issues again. This includes ensuring maternity services are ringfenced and that its staff are not deployed to other areas or services in hospitals. This is crucial to ensure the continuation of safe and high-quality maternity care.” 



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

Notes to Editors 


The RCM and RCOG called for maternity services to be ringfenced and outlined key actions to ensure maternity services continue functioning efficiently in the second wave of the pandemic earlier this week, see https://www.rcm.org.uk/media-releases/2020/september/leading-royal-colleges-urge-the-nhs-to-learn-lessons-and-avoid-redeploying-maternity-staff-ahead-of-second-wave/.  


The Health and Social Care  Committee report can be read at https://committees.parliament.uk/committee/81/health-and-social-care-committee/news/119677/mps-say-compelling-case-for-weekly-testing-of-nhs-staff-to-stop-nhs-becoming-a-covidonly-service-in-second-wave/.  


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/