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Reflections on an educational intervention to encourage midwives to work in a continuity of care model – exploration and potential solutions

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Original languageEnglish
Article number102733
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2020

King's Authors


Objective: To explore barriers and facilitators for midwives working in a midwifery continuity of carer model, and to assess if an educational intervention could help address some of these barriers, designed to help achieve NHS England's target of majority of women receiving midwifery continuity of carer by March 2021. Design: Two-day workshops were co-designed by experienced continuity midwives, service managers and midwifery educators using implementation theory delivered to maternity staff, with barriers assessed prior to training and re-assessed at the end. Setting and participants: 1407 maternity healthcare professionals from 62 different National Health Service trusts across England attended 56 different workshops. Findings: Perceived barriers to working in this model were reported more frequently than facilitators. Reported facilitators prior to training included perceived benefits to the midwife and to women. Reported barriers included personal and professional concerns, fear, issues with the national agenda and institutional and/or organisational issues. The educational intervention was able to address the majority of barriers raised. The training was well evaluated, with an average rating of 4.2 on a five-point Likert scale. Key conclusions: While this specific educational intervention appears to have been useful in addressing concerns with working in a continuity model, further work is needed to identify barriers to change. This will aid more local designed interventions. Implications for practice: If policy targets related to continuity of carer are to be achieved then working in this way needs to be sustainable and appeal to the current midwifery workforce.

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