Enhancing Midwifery Led Units: A Basic Guide

The NICE intrapartum guidelines (2014) as well as the NICE Quality Standards (2015) recommend that healthy women with uncomplicated pregnancies are offered the choice between four places of birth: home, freestanding midwifery unit (FMU), alongside midwifery unit (AMU) and the obstetric unit (OU).

Instructed by: All4Maternity . in:

Course Description

Introduction

The NICE intrapartum guidelines (2014) as well as the NICE Quality Standards (2015) recommend that healthy women with uncomplicated pregnancies are offered the choice between four places of birth: home, freestanding midwifery unit (FMU), alongside midwifery unit (AMU) and the obstetric unit (OU).
Strong evidence suggests that midwifery led units (MLUs) are associated with lower rates of obstetric interventions, reduced maternal morbidity and being associated with similar rates of adverse outcomes for newborn babies. MLUs have also been shown to be cost-effective and associated with positive service users' experiences as well as improved midwives' wellbeing.
MLUs are sometimes known as birth centres.

Definitions (Rowe, 2011):

Alongside midwifery unit (AMU): a midwifery-led unit offering care to women with straightforward pregnancies during labour and birth. Transfer to obstetric unit is in the same building, or in a separate building on the same site. Transfer will normally be by trolley, bed or wheelchair.
Freestanding midwifery unit (FMU): a midwifery-led unit offering care to women with straightforward pregnancies antenatally, during labour and birth. General Practitioners may also be involved in care. Transfer to obstetric unit is in a separate site. Transfer will normally involve car or ambulance.

Learning aims and objectives

This module aims at providing you with an introduction to midwifery led units.
By the end of this one hour eLearn module you will be able to:

  • Describe the historical facts that have led to centralisation of almost all births in hospitals.
  • Describe what AMUs and FMUs are.
  • Discuss the evidence on maternal and perinatal outcomes of care in midwifery led units
  • Appreciate the key characteristics that make MLUs successful.

Keywords and linking topics

Midwifery led units, midwifery-led care, birthplace, normal birth, optimum birth, salutogenesis.

Curriculum

  • Module
    • Unit 1
      • Video
      • Summary
      • References
      • Useful Links
      • Activities
      • Question 1
      • Question 2
      • Question 3
      • Question 4
      • Question 5
      • Question 6
      • Question 7
      • Question 8
      • Question 9
      • Question 10

About Instructor

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