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Pregnancy and Childbirth

This guideline updates and replaces NICE guideline CG55 (published September 2007). It offers evidence-based advice on the care of women and their babies during labour and immediately after the birth. It covers healthy women with uncomplicated pregnancies entering labour at low risk of developing intrapartum complications. New recommendations have been added in a number of areas, including choosing place of birth, care during the latent first stage of labour, transfer of care, fetal assessment and monitoring during labour (particularly cardiotocography compared with intermittent auscultation) and management of the third stage of labour. This resource can be accessed by clicking here:

The guideline applies to all pregnant women with complex social factors and contains a number of recommendations on standards of care for this population as a whole. However, four groups of women were identified as exemplars:

  • women who misuse substances (alcohol and/or drugs)
  • women who are recent migrants, asylum seekers or refugees, or who have difficulty reading or speaking English
  • young women aged under 20
  • women who experience domestic abuse.

Because there are differences in the barriers to care and particular needs of these four groups, specific recommendations have been made for each group. To view this guidance - please click here:

NICE formal guidance on maternal and child nutrition.

Follow the link for full details:

Responsibility for commissioning maternity services will be distributed to GP-led Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs) once the PCTS are abolished next year.  The RCOG has produced guidance in collaboration with the RCM and NCT, aimed at giving CCGs advice and evidence-based information relating to some key issues to the commissioning and provision of maternity services in England.

This guidance is for NHS and other commissioners, managers and professionals who have a direct or indirect role in, and responsibility for:

  • women who are pregnant or who are planning a pregnancy
  • mothers who have had a baby in the last 2 years.

It is particularly aimed at: GPs, obstetricians, midwives, health visitors, dietitians, community pharmacists and all those working in antenatal and postnatal services and children’s centres.

It may also be of interest to women before, during and after pregnancy, their partners and families, and other members of the public.

In this guidance the term ‘weight management’ involves:

  • assessing and monitoring body weight
  • preventing someone from becoming overweight (body mass index [BMI] 25–29.9 kg/m²) or obese (BMI greater than or equal to 30 kg/m²)
  • helping someone to achieve and maintain a healthy weight by eating healthily and being physically active.

The six recommendations are based on approaches that have been proven to be effective for the whole population. They include advice on:

  • How to help women with a BMI of 30 or more to lose weight before and after pregnancy – and how to help them eat healthily and keep physically active during pregnancy.
  • How to help all pregnant women eat healthily and keep physically active.
  • The role of community-based services.
  • The professional skills needed to achieve the above.

Follow the link for full details:

This excel workbook provides modelled estimates of the number of births (live and stillbirths) to women with pregestational diabetes in 2009 down to PCT level.

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