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Maternity Care

Revised Midwives rules and standards come into force January 2013

Revised Midwives rules and standards come into force

The NMC has reviewed the Midwives rules and standards.

The new rules, which came into force on 1 January 2013, are available to  view and download.

The NMC is required to set rules and standards for the practice and supervision of midwives and to regularly review them to ensure they remain effective. The standards that midwives must meet include The Code: Standards of conduct, performance and ethics and theMidwives rules and standards.

Changes made in the revised Midwives rules and standards include:

  • Some rules were simplified and clarified, and rules which are already covered by other standards or legislation have been removed.
  • Some rules were considered for change but have been retained, including the rule concerning suspension from practice by a local supervising authority, which was widely supported by respondents to the consultations.
  • Local supervising authorities will now be required to publish guidelines for the annual review of midwives' practice to ensure a standardised approach across the UK.
  • Guidance has been added outlining how best to deal with issues arising from a midwife's practice, which will supersede theStandards for the supervised practice of midwives (2007).

Katerina Kolyva, Acting Director of Registration and Standards said:

"Mothers are right to expect high quality care from the midwives they rely on during pregnancy, birth and the postnatal period. We hope the new rules will help to ensure that they can continue to feel confident in the care they receive.

"The new Midwives rules and standards reflect the needs of midwives, mothers and a range of other people and organisations. They are streamlined, clear and relevant but will continue to maintain the provision of a statutory framework for the practice and supervision of midwives that protects the wellbeing of mothers and babies."

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