Number of midwives not set to increase as originally pledged

Cameron and Clegg have gone back on pre-election pledges to increase the number of midwives, claims the Royal College of Midwives


The Prime Minister and Deputy Prime Minister’s promise of more funding for new midwives has been abandoned, reports The Telepragh.


Midwives across the UK say more midwives are needed as there are more complicated childbirths along with an increase of multiple births.

“When they were outside government they were promising much, now they are committing to nothing,” said Cathy Warwick, from the Royal College of Midwives (RCM).

Earlier this week we reported that a lot of second time mums are requesting caesareans due to the stressful events of their first labour, which Cathy says is due to a lack of support and the number of midwives.

“Before the election both David Cameron and Nick Clegg pledged more midwives. As recently as January David Cameron had an article in the The Sun where he talked about the importance of midwives to mothers and said that if he was in power he would give us 3,000 more midwives,” said Cathy recently in BBC Radio 4’s Today programme.

“We do want to see an increase in midwives and, unlike the party opposite, we’re actually funding the health service in a way that makes that possible,” David Cameron had said.

Cathy said the birth rate has increased by 20% while midwive numbers have only increased by 12% between 2001 and 2009.

“That’s coupled with the fact that women’s needs in pregnancy are getting much more complex.  It’s more older mothers, more younger mothers, there are more multiple pregnancies, twins, triplets and also there are more women who are managing to get pregnant who wouldn’t before with conditions such as cardiac disease,” added Cathy.

Across the UK, the RCM found that maternity units are facing cuts, with many midwives saying their wards have had budget cuts in the last 12 months.


“There must of course be enough midwives to meet the demands arising from the number of births. The commitment to 3,000 midwives made in Opposition was dependent on the birth rate increasing as it has done in the recent past. It was not in the coalition agreement because predictions now suggest the birth rate will be stable over the next few years,” said a Conservative spokesperson.

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