Midwifery staffing is the focus of two new publications from the RCM.
They come at a time of rising demand due to a historically high birthrate, increasingly complex pregnancies and expectations that midwives will deliver more support and advice.
Growing demand is combined with a decade-long midwifery shortage, a rapidly ageing workforce and fears of a fall in applications to study midwifery.
Cathy Warwick, RCM chief executive, said: ‘These are challenging times in maternity services and the wider NHS. Getting the right staffing levels and skill mix in can be a difficult and frustrating process.
‘This is particularly relevant as many senior midwives face increasing demands and often diminishing resources and staffing.
‘I am sure these publications will help senior midwives and other NHS managers to apply rigorous procedures for getting the best possible levels of care from available resources.’
The reports are: Getting the midwifery workforce right and RCM guidance on implementing the NICE safe staffing guideline on midwifery staffing in maternity settings.
The former outlines how maternity services should be organised funded and staffed. It also outlines the role of the midwife and approaches for services.
The safe staffing publication supports the NICE guideline recommendation. It is aimed at senior midwives and NHS mangers, aims to support them to implement the NICE safe midwifery staffing guideline.
To read the workforce publication, click here. To read the safe staffing publication, click here.