Continuity of Carer Guidance

Continuity of carer, as well as care, is an important concept and an evidence-based model of care for safe and quality integrated maternity services. It has been a topic of interest for many EMA member associations. Now in UK, the NHS England has published guidance on continuity of carer in maternity services. This is the woman seeing the same midwife, or small group midwives throughout pregnancy, during the labour and birth and after the baby is born.  The document aims to support local maternity systems implement continuity of carer. 

This is part of the transformation programme implementing the Policy ‘Better Births’ in England with similar policies in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. All the policies and associated programmes are supported by the Royal College of Midwives who is an active stakeholder in the policy and programme development.

Commenting on the guidance, Gill Walton, Chief Executive and General Secretary of the Royal College of Midwives, said: “This is a very positive step for women and for our maternity services. We know that continuity of carer delivers safer care and a better experience for women. “Implementing continuity of carer across the maternity journey is a significant change in the ways of working for many midwives. Midwives are central to providing this service and they must be supported and engaged in any process of change, with appropriate education and preparation for changes in their roles.