This guidance was published on 9 April 2020 by the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists and the Royal College of Midwifery.
It highlights that childbearing women and newborn infants continue to require safe person-centred care during the current COVID-19 pandemic and they represent a unique population. The majority are healthy, experiencing a life event that may bring clinical, emotional, psychological, and social needs. Women and newborn infants therefore require access to quality midwifery care, multidisciplinary services and additional care for complications including emergencies, if needed.
When staff and services are under extreme stress there is a real risk of increasing avoidable harm, including an increased risk of infection, morbidity and mortality, and reductions in the overall quality of care. Safety, quality and preventing avoidable harm must be key priorities in decision making. Continuation of as near normal care for women should be supported, as it is recognised to prevent poor outcomes.