Madeleine Murphy

Acting Editor

Perinatal mental health is still everyone's business

Pregnancy and birth in the UK are safer than ever. But while the maternal mortality rate has declined steadily since 2003, there has been no significant reduction in maternal suicide. It is now the...

Midwives show strength in the face of adversity

In recent weeks, maternity professionals and service users have rallied in support of independent midwives, after the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) decided that the indemnity scheme provided by...

Book review

The Label: A story for families Having...

The benefits of a universal approach

Christmas has been and gone, but there are more gifts to come for pregnant women in Scotland: 2017 sees the launch of a Finnish-style baby box scheme across the country. A 3-month pilot in Orkney and...

Respect for women's reproductive rights

‘Sometimes it's hard to be a woman,’ Tammy Wynette once sang, before going on to advise that one should forgive one's husband for being unfaithful because ‘he's just a man’ and thus, she seems to...

Whatever happened to safety in numbers?

England is a safe place to have a baby. So says secretary of state for health Jeremy Hunt, in the foreword to the new report from the Department of Health's (DH, 2016) Maternity Safety Programme Team....

Advancing attitudes towards maternal age

A former school friend of mine, who had her first child this year, told me about her anger when an obstetrician referred to her pregnancy as ‘geriatric’. Inappropriate though this term may seem...

Optimum care for disabled women

This summer, as the Paralympics GB team soared to success with 147 medals in Rio, a report (Hall et al, 2016) was published which highlights that there is a long way to go in improving attitudes...

A welcome boost for perinatal mental health

Perinatal mental health has been lingering near the top of the midwifery agenda for a while—at least in terms of rhetoric—but now some of the talk is being translated into action. The Perinatal Mental...

‘Do more with less’ must have its limits

Along with ‘thinking outside the box’ and ‘touching base’, another annoying phrase that corporate jargon has inflicted on the English language is ‘do more with less’. This little gem has been...

Instability in the wake of the EU referendum

In the aftermath of the referendum on EU membership, uncertainty reigns. As I write this, members of the Conservative Party are considering leadership options following the resignation of David...

UK's first Baby Box programme launched at London NHS Trust

‘Let's start from a point of celebration: “You've had a baby, congratulations!” I think if we just start at that point, it's such a positive strategy…’ Gill Perks, lead midwife at Queen Charlotte's...

Looking to the future of supervision

At the end of April, the Department of Health (DH) launched a consultation on proposed changes to the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) legislation regarding midwifery regulation (Proctor, 2016)....

Maternal autonomy

In the UK today, childbirth is relatively safe Despite this, there are reports that fear of birth is on the rise One reason may be the growing emphasis on risks associated with pregnancy and birth...

The personal side of public health

Despite talk of ‘woman-centred care’, much of the care provided by the NHS is based on guidelines directed at the whole population, rather than tailored to the individual. In time-pressured maternity...

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