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Home/STUC Congress/Congress 2024/Live Decisions of Congress 2024/Motion 40

Live Decisions of Congress 2024

Motion 40

Midwifery Workforce

“That this Congress notes that Scotland’s health is deteriorating and continues to have the lowest life expectancy in the UK. Poverty and austerity is impacting on our current and future health, that disadvantage is impacting on the health of our families, with a widening gap in birth weight, infant morbidity and mortality and attainment at 27-30 months. The evidence is clear that investment in pregnancy and the first three months of life has the greatest return of investment in improved child and future population health. Midwifery, a universal service, reduces and mitigates the adverse impact of inequalities, bringing the right care and access around every family.

“Short-termism is not producing outcomes for our families. As the complex health needs and disadvantage of women increase, the resultant increased workload means midwives are experiencing burnout and moral distress when they are unable to give the personalised care that makes the difference that families want and need.

“Repeated inquiries and reports show the damaging impact of staffing shortages in maternity and neonatal care have on the safety and quality of care of women alongside that detriment to staff recruitment, retention and wellbeing but we continue to work with ‘funded establishments’ based on historical workforce numbers assigned in a world that no longer exists.

“Congress calls on the General Council to join the RCM in campaigning for the implementation of the following recommendations:

  • workforce planning should go beyond clinical tasks to be based on the evidence-based needs of women, children and families, ensuring that staffing levels are safe, and person-centered care can be truly delivered; and
  • the Cabinet Secretary’s nursing and midwifery taskforce makes tangible adequately resourced changes to support retention of staff, which includes access to flexible working, training and education, rewarded career progression and leadership development and prioritised wellbeing.”

Mover: Royal College of Midwives

Tags: Carried