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16 October, 2017

New analysis by the Trade Union Congress (TUC) has revealed that midwives will be thousands of pounds worse off a year by 2022 despite the Government scrapping the public sector pay cap.

The TUC says the findings are proof that the ‘living standards squeeze’ will continue for midwives and all other  public sector workers.

The findings released today coincide with a major TUC rally against the pay cap which will be attended by members of the Royal College Midwives (RCM) among other NHS trade unions and various other unions representing public sectors workers.

RCM’s Chief Executive Gill Walton will join the TUC’s General Secretary Frances O’ Grady and other trade unions leaders who will address attendees at the rally in Parliament Square, London.

16 October, 2017

Today the Office for National Statistics (ONS) has published statistics on births, including home births and stillbirth rates. Commenting on the statistics, Louise Silverton, Director for Midwifery at the Royal College of Midwives, said: “The drop in home births is a concern and we need to know why this is happening.

13 October, 2017


A pregnant mother sleeping on her back during late pregnancy may cause problems for the fetus, according to new research published in The Journal of Physiology. This is the first study to monitor unborn babies overnight and at the same time record the mother’s position during sleep.

The sleep position of women in late pregnancy has been shown to be related to an increased risk of late stillbirth (after 28 weeks gestation).

Researchers at the University of Auckland investigated sleep position of pregnant women by setting up an infrared video camera to record their position as they slept. They also continuous recorded the heart rate of the women and fetus overnight using an ECG device.

10 October, 2017

Jeremy Hunt has confirmed the NHS pay cap has been “scrapped”, but has yet to reveal whether or not midwives and other NHS staff will get pay awards to match rising inflation.

9 October, 2017

Today the Welsh Government has published the findings of the ‘Your Birth We Care’ survey. The survey aimed to evaluate women’s views of antenatal services and how current service provisions can prepare women for labour, birth and parenting. It will also help develop a shared vision for the future of midwifery led services based on the findings.

4 October, 2017

Today (3rd October 2017) Jeremy Hunt gave a speech at the Conservative party Conference in which he pledged to create additional training posts for student nurses and more flexible working for NHS staff. Commenting on the speech, Suzanne Tyler, Director for services to Members at the Royal College of Midwives, said: “This is a welcome commitment to the NHS and may go some way to addressing the often woeful staffing levels

27 September, 2017

There is overwhelming public support for removing the Government’s cap on NHS pay according to survey results released today (Thursday, 28th September 2017) by 14 NHS unions. The survey of over 2,000 people by ComRes asked if they supported removal of the cap on pay for NHS staff. A large majority (84%) supported scrapping the cap.

27 September, 2017

The Scottish Government  has today (Thursday September 27th) named five Early Adopter Boards that will take forward the early implementation of The Best Start recommendations for maternity and neonatal services.

The following five health boards in Scotland will take forward early implementation of the Best Start recommendations, including the implementation of continuity of carer and the development of local delivery of maternity care.

 

  • NHS Forth Valley
  • NHS Highland
  • NHS Lanarkshire
  • NHS Lothian
  • NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde (part Board – Clyde only)

 

18 September, 2017

Pay remains top of the agenda for The Royal College of Midwives (RCM) at it’s Activists Conference which  takes place in Leeds today. The RCM Activists Conference will bring together all accredited RCM stewards, health and safety representatives, maternity support worker (MSW) advocates, branch secretaries, chairs and treasurers.

15 September, 2017

NHS unions are today (Friday) breaking with tradition and submitting a pay claim directly to the government on behalf of more than one million health workers across the UK.

In a letter to the Chancellor, 14 health unions including the Royal College of Midwives, UNISON, the Royal College of Nursing, the Chartered Society of Physiotherapy, Unite and the GMB, are asking Philip Hammond to earmark funds in the November Budget for a pay rise in line with inflation (Retail Price Index). The claim also calls for an additional £800 to restore some of the pay lost over the past seven years.

In a letter to the Chancellor, 14 health unions including UNISON, the Royal College of Nursing, the Royal College of Midwives, the Chartered Society of Physiotherapy, Unite and the GMB, are asking Philip Hammond to earmark funds in the November Budget for a pay rise in line with inflation (Retail Price Index). The claim also calls for an additional £800 to restore some of the pay lost over the past seven years.

Cleaners, nurses, radiographers, pharmacists, midwives, medical secretaries, paramedics, therapists, dental technicians, as well as caterers, porters and everyone else who works in the NHS have suffered real terms pay cuts of around 15 per cent because of the government’s harsh pay policies, say unions.

NHS unions believe the government has undermined the role of the independent pay review body and severely restricted its ability to make recommendations. Health unions are therefore seizing the initiative today and going directly to the government. 

11 September, 2017

 

Later today (Tuesday September 12th) the Royal College of Midwives (RCM) will officially launch a series of animated films on Female Genital Mutilation (FGM).

The short powerful animated films have been developed by the RCM in collaboration with The Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists (RCOG), The Royal College General Practitioners (RCGP), survivors of FGM, NGOs and a variety local community partners.

Instrumentally the RCM and its partners worked closely with FGM survivors to ensure the authenticity of the stories being told via the animations remained true to the realities of surviving FGM.

The films are not only aimed at creating awareness around the health and consequences of FGM, but also hope to cut through much of the inaccurate and misleading information circulating in the public sphere about FGM.

Importantly, each of the FGM animations ends with a ‘call to act’ on each UK Government.

The call to action includes the following;

  • To develop, implement, monitor and evaluate a National FGM Action Plan with the goal of ending FGM in the UK by 2030.
  • A commitment by all government agencies to end FGM, support survivors and share information to keep women and girls safe.
  • Provide accessible specialist health and psychological care and support services in community settings for survivors and potential victims of all age groups.
  • Education and training for the children's workforce in their role and responsibilities for safeguarding girls and young women.
11 September, 2017

Today research has been published in the inline journal BMJ Open on the effects of light or occasional drinking in pregnancy. 

Commenting on the research, Carmel Lloyd Head of Education at the Royal College of Midwives, said: “We support the view of the research authors and our advice also remains that if you are pregnant or thinking of becoming pregnant then it is better to remove any doubt about the impact of alcohol and not drink it.

11 September, 2017

Today research has been published by the Institute for Fiscal Studies on more complex births and staffing pressures putting strain on maternity services, leading to temporary closures. Commenting, Jon Skewes, Director for Policy, Employment relations and Communications at the Royal College of Midwives, said: “There is a cocktail of a historically high birthrate, increasingly complex births and staff shortages that lead to units closing temporarily.

7 September, 2017

 

 

The Royal College of Midwives (RCM) has called on the Department of Health in Northern Ireland to issue clear guidance on abortion referrals for midwives and other healthcare professionals.

 

The call from the RCM comes as the threat of prosecution against midwives and other medical professionals in Northern Ireland to make abortion referrals to the UK has been lifted.

 

Amnesty International has confirmed today that the Director for Public Prosecutions in Northern Ireland, Barra McGrory QC has told them ‘that he can see no risk of criminal prosecution for NHS employees in Northern Ireland who refer women to NHS hospitals and clinics in the rest of the UK’.

5 September, 2017

 

Nicola Sturgeon has confirmed this afternoon that the 1 % cap on public sector pay rises in Scotland will be scrapped from next year.

Responding to the announcement the Royal College of Midwives (RCMs) Director for Scotland, Mary Ross-Davie said; “The RCM very much welcomes this afternoon’s announcement by Scotland’s First Minister. The RCM has campaigned long and hard on behalf of our members for the pay cap to be lifted and we are happy that the Scottish Government has finally listened to our calls. With this announcement, the Scottish Government has led the way for the other countries of the UK  to follow.

However, it is not enough to lift the pay cap, there must be a commitment in place to fund an above-inflationary pay increase for midwives, maternity support workers and other NHS staff.

 

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