AIMS is delighted that the Government has recognised the importance to the safety of women and babies of the continuity of carer model of midwifery. Having a midwife that the woman knows and trusts together with a system to change that midwife if she's not right for that woman is known to lead to lower rates of stillbirth, use of forceps, unwanted caesarean birth, perineal trauma and post natal depression. The overall cost savings to the NHS are significant due to the reduction in complications. The model has been used successfully in many areas, and is available to some women in the UK, but not others. This means that those women and babies currently unable to access Continuity of Carer are at increased risk of these adverse outcomes.
It is important to note that midwives in training does not necessarily mean that there will jobs for them to go to, so AIMS calls on the Government to ensure that they also follow through with ringfenced funding to trusts to ensure that they are able to employ these midwives, and also to ensure that trusts must all provide this service to stop any postcode lottery. AIMS is also concerned that forcing Universities to increase intake of trainee midwives, having removed the midwives’ bursary, simply means that more midwives will leave training with huge debt and nowhere to work while the Health Secretary can repeat his mantra of “X many thousand more midwives in training” which is entirely different to them having jobs to go to.
More information about Continuity of Carer and AIMS' "Midwife for Me and My Baby" campaign, please visit our campign link: https://www.aims.org.uk/campaigning/item/a-midwife-for-me-and-my-baby
AIMS supports all maternity service users to navigate the system as it exists, and campaigns for a system which truly meets the needs of all.
AIMS does not give medical advice, but instead we focus on helping women to find the information that they need to make informed decisions about what is right for them, and support them to have their decisions respected by their health care providers. The AIMS Helpline volunteers will be happy to provide further information and support. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org or ring 0300 365 0663.
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