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An investigation of the relationship between the caseload model of midwifery for socially disadvantaged women and childbirth outcomes using routine data - A retrospective, observational study

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Hannah Rayment-Jones, Trevor Murrells, Jane Sandall

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)409-417
Number of pages9
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2015


  • Final author Caseload model

    Final_author_Caseload_model.pdf, 356 KB, application/pdf


    Accepted author manuscript

    NOTICE: this is the author’s version of a work that was accepted for publication in Midwifery. Changes resulting from the publishing process, such as peer review, editing, corrections, structural formatting, and other quality control mechanisms may not be reflected in this document. Changes may have been made to this work since it was submitted for publication.

King's Authors


Objective: the objective of this study was to describe and compare childbirth outcomes and processes for women with complex social factors who received caseload midwifery care, and standard maternity care in the UK. Background: women with complex social factors experience high rates of morbidity, mortality and poor birth outcomes. A caseload team was established to support these women throughout pregnancy and childbirth by providing continuity and individualised care. Methods: data was collected from computerised birth details of 194 women with complex social factors who presented for maternity care between May 2012 and June 2013; 96 received standard care and 98 caseload care. SPSS v21 was used to calculate descriptive and inferential statistics. Logistic regression modelling found no differences in demographics, therefore unadjusted statistics are presented. Comparative analysis between women receiving caseload care and those receiving standard care was accomplished using χ2 test, relative risk (RR) and 95% confidence intervals (CI). Results: the relationship between type of care and outcome was not changed by the inclusion of confounding factors. Women receiving caseload care were more likely to experience; spontaneous vaginal childbirth (80% versus 55% RR 1.88, 95% CI 1.27-2.77, P=<0.001), use water for pain relief (32% versus 10%, RR 4.10 95% CI 1.95-8.64, p=<0.001), birth in the midwife led centre (26% versus 13% RR 1.48 95% CI 1.12-1.95, p=0.023), assessment by 10 weeks gestation (24% versus 8% RR 1.61 95% CI 1.24-2.10, p=0.008), shorter postnatal stay (1 day versus 3 days SD 1.2 versus 2.2, p=<0.001), and know their midwife (90% versus 8% RR 8.98 95% CI 4.97-16.2, p=<0.001). More women in the caseload group were referred to multidisciplinary support services; psychiatry (56% versus 19% RR 2.06 95% CI 1.59-2.65, p=<0.001), domestic violence advocacy (42% versus 18% RR 1.68 CI 1.31-2.15, p=<0.001) and other services (56% versus 31% RR 1.58 95% CI 1.15-2.16, p=0.03). They were less likely to have a caesarean section (11% versus 33% RR 0.26 95% CI 0.12-0.55, P=<0.001), an epidural/spinal for pain relief (35% versus 56%, RR 0.64 95% CI 0.46-0.86, p=0.004), give birth on the labour ward (70% versus 88% RR 0.63 95% CI 0.49-0.83, p=0.006), and had fewer antenatal admissions (0.9(SD 1.1) versus 1.3(SD1.5), p=0.036) and neonatal unit admissions (4% versus 18%, RR 0.35 95% CI 0.15-0.85, p=0.005). Conclusion: caseload midwifery care appeared to confer increased benefit and reduced harmful outcomes. Findings for individual outcomes differed from previous literature depending on outcome, suggesting caseload care may affect women in different ways depending on their individual needs.

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