Sands has welcomed the Royal College of Midwives (RCM) latest continuity of carer statement, which revises the one made in 2016, and reiterates the RCM’s belief that this model in midwifery should become the core model of maternity care.

Clea Harmer, Chief Executive of Sands (Stillbirth and neonatal death charity), said:

“Being able to build a trusted relationship with a named midwife through pregnancy, birth and postnatal care, ensures the best possible experience for mothers, their birth partners, and other family members.

“Midwife-led continuity of carer is also vital in improving maternity safety and ultimately saving the lives of more babies at risk of stillbirth or neonatal death.

“So we strongly welcome the Royal College of Midwives’ new commitment to continuity throughout antenatal, intrapartum and postnatal care.

“In order for the model to be successful it’s essential that it is properly funded; that there are enough midwives, that they have the time to spend with the women in their care, and that they are adequately trained and supported by managers.

“Finally, as the midwife-led continuity of carer model is rolled out, there should be a focus on prioritising it for women with a higher risk of losing their baby.”

RCM chief executive Gill Walton said: "The RCM supports the recommendations of both the English and Scottish maternity policies, which place continuity of carer at the centre of our maternity care system: that is, enabling a woman to build a relationship with her midwife and a small team of health professionals throughout her pregnancy and into the early days of parenting.

"We know that continuity of carer improves outcomes for women and babies, and that it can improve job satisfaction for midwives too."

Find out more about the publication of Midwifery continuity of carer (MCOC).