What if Series 2 – Mary Ross-Davie introduces latest guide for MSWs of continuity of carer

By Mary Ross-Davie, Director Scotland Midwifery Continuity of Carer - MCOC MSWs - Maternity Support Workers

I am delighted that we are today publishing the second in our ‘What if?’ series of documents that aim to support our members in the implementation of Midwifery Continuity of Carer. It's here.

The first of this series was published in September last year and focussed on providing you with guidance so that you can make judgements about rotas and shift patterns for providing continuity, so that they not only provide good continuity for women but are sustainable models of working for midwives. We have had lots of positive feedback from you about this document and how it has helped you in discussions and planning. You can read this document here.

The second in the series of seven that we are publishing this year, focuses on the role of the Maternity support worker (MSW) in developing continuity models of care. MSWs are valued members of the maternity team in all parts of the UK, but we are aware that a lot of the discussions and resources around continuity of carer have focussed on the role of the midwife and not considered MSWs.

We wanted to ensure that where new models of care are being introduced or ‘scaled up’, that MSWs are at the forefront of everyone’s thoughts. We believe that MSWs have an important part to play in supporting a maternity service built around continuity of carer – either as part of a continuity team or as part of the core maternity service in hospitals. We hope that this document will give you some food for thought and help spark conversations about how your service can include MSWs in developing greater levels of continuity.

We had a great team that helped write this document – including a continuity midwife and a maternity support worker and we have a couple of great vignettes from Birmingham and Southampton – with thanks to our members who contributed those to bring the document to life!

Look out for the next in the series which will focus on how you put co-production with staff at the heart of MCOC implementation – out in the Spring!