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Listening to women and compassionate care


The core curriculum is divided into 14 Capabilities in practice (CiP’s). Each CiP outlines the key skills expected, along with a set of descriptors to help assess progress.

Within the curriculum specifically the following CiP’s address aspects of patient centred care

CiP 1 – the doctor is able to apply medical knowledge, clinical skills and professional values for the provision of high quality and safe patient-centred care. Facilitates discussions, modifies their approach to the patient when cultural background or personal values may have an impact on engagement and care. Ability to facilitate women’s decision making, shares information with patients and their families clearly, in a timely, non-judgmental fashion and facilitates communication (including use of a translator, advocate or supporter when needed)

CiP 13: The doctor is able to champion the healthcare needs of people from all groups within society: Promotes non- discriminatory practice and recognises how health systems can discriminate against patients with protected characteristics and works to minimise this discrimination. Is able to perform consultations addressing the specific needs of a disabled person and being mindful that not all disabilities are visible. Understands the specific needs of transgender and non-binary individuals and is able to perform consultations and refer appropriately to specialist services


 The following core knowledge through eLearning modules includes sections on communications skills that encompasses compassionate care.


All RCOG patient information aims to provide information in a way that is easy to understand for women and families and empower them to ask questions and help decision making. All patient information includes advice on shared decision making in a textbox towards the end.

The College has published a Good Practice Paper on Maternal Deaths which provides healthcare professionals with operational guidance for managing events surrounding a maternal death and ensuring that partners, families, and colleagues receive the best support at an incredibly difficult time.


The College champions the best in women’s health care and supports doctors so that they’re equipped to do the best job possible for women. The RCOG Women’s Network aims to make sure that women are at the heart of everything the College does. The Women’s Network is a strategic RCOG committee that informs the College about issues affecting women during pregnancy, labour and birth, around fertility and gynaecological conditions through to the menopause and women’s health in later life. They bring insight into the College on current and emerging issues in women’s health which may need consideration and action, and lead their own projects. Network members help the College with the development of guidelines, patient information, training and education, continuing professional development, audit and quality improvement and policy. They are supported by the broader which brings a breadth of health experiences and outcomes from the wider women’s health community to inform the Network’s involvement in College activities.

Events at RCOG Congress 2023, had sessions on supporting women experiencing recurrent miscarriage.

The National Maternity and Perinatal Audit (NMPA) is a large scale audit of the NHS maternity services across England, Scotland and Wales. Using high-quality data, the audit aims to evaluate a range of care processes and outcomes, in order to identify good practice and areas for improvement in the care of women and babies looked after by NHS maternity services. The NMPA has Women and Families Involvement Group (WFIG), which meets at least 3 times a year and consist of members with lived experiences of accessing maternity services. The group provides input in all co-produced lay summaries, reports and areas of the website. The group also lead on dissemination strategies, for example working with the Maternity voices Partnerships (MVPs). The NMPA Family Gateway is an area of the NMPA website which has been co-produced with our WFIG. It includes an introductory animation to the audit, the lay summaries of NMPA outputs, decision making information, and useful links to other organisations.

The OASI (obstetric anal sphincter injury) Care Bundle was a collaboration between the RCOG, Royal College of Midwives, London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine (LSHTM) and Croydon Health Services NHS Trust. An OASI is an obstetric anal sphincter injury that can occur during vaginal birth, also referred to as severe perineal tearing or third- and fourth-degree tears. Most women and birthing people who have an OASI detected and repaired at birth recover well, although it can take some time. The long-term consequences of OASI include increased risk of chronic pain, sexual dysfunction and difficulty or inability to control the bladder, bowels or the passing of wind. These consequences can significantly affect mental health, the ability to carry out everyday activities and personal relationships. The project has created a hub to inform women about the types of tears that can occur during childbirth, how to minimise risks of deeper tearing, and what can be done to help recovery if you tear. The hub also supports taking prompt action for any concerns about recovery, helping women feel better informed when discussing any topics with a healthcare professional.