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RCM/RCOG joint statement on multidisciplinary working

News 18 March 2018

The Royal College of Midwives (RCM) and the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists (RCOG) are committed to speaking with one voice on maternity safety and are united in their goal that every woman should have a good birth, with the best possible experience and outcomes for mother and her baby. They share a vision for a modern maternity team whose common purpose is supporting best practice, mutually respectful relationships, strong leadership and ensuring the woman’s voice and need are at the centre of her care.

Multi-professional working plays a vital role in the provision of high quality care for mothers and their babies. The RCOG and RCM both recognise this to be a key component in the delivery of safe maternity care and emphasise the importance of respectful team working to build a supportive workplace culture. 

The RCM and RCOG continue to work together with midwives and obstetricians, providers, health leaders, policy makers and commissioners, on both a national and local level, to ensure services are fit for purpose and able to meet the needs of women today and in the future. 

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For media enquiries please contact the RCOG press office on +44 (0)20 7045 6773 or email 

The RCM’s Labour Leaders Programme ‘Working Together for Safer Care is an interactive workshop aimed at multidisciplinary maternity teams. It was designed and delivered collaboratively by the RCM and RCOG. 

The RCOG’s national clinical programme, ‘Each Baby Counts, aims to reduce the number of babies who die or are left severely disabled as a result of incidents occurring during term labour. In its latest report, it shows that communication between teams is a crucial factor in ensuring patient safety. Its recommendations are aimed at doctors and midwives working in maternity units across the UK and calls for work to address factors affecting team working and communication. 

The RCOG continues to work with RCM on an expansion of Each Baby Counts, ‘Learn and Support’, which is focused on supporting trusts to implement recommendations that will improve care, including improved working within multidisciplinary teams.

The RCOG and RCM are committed to working with hospital trusts and services to provide safe and sustainable services that improve outcomes for babies and mothers. The Invited Review Service, undertaken by midwives and obstetricians, is designed to help employers, commissioners and managers provide safe and sustainable services that improve outcomes for women’s health.

The RCOG was involved in the development of the ‘Better Births report which recommends multi-professional working to deliver safe and personalised care for women and their babies. The RCOG also sits on the board of the Maternity Transformation Programme which is the delivery arm of the report.

The National Maternity and Perinatal Audit, a joint collaboration between the RCOG, RCM and RCPCH, is the largest audit of NHS maternity services across England, Scotland and Wales. A balanced, effective and sustainable workforce is critical to the delivery of high quality maternity services as set out in Better Births, yet a NMPA report highlighted that 9 out of 10 obstetric units reported a gap in their middle grade rotas which can affect job satisfaction, training, staff wellbeing and quality of care.

RCOG report on workforce calls for multidisciplinary training.

RCM/RCOG joint statement on the Maternity Safety Strategy.

RCM/RCOG joint statement in response to MBBRACE report. 

RCOG/RCM joint release on new web-based toolkit to tackle undermining and bullying behaviour in the workplace.