News and Resources
Guidelines for Shared Maternity Care Affiliates
|The Royal Women’s Hospital General Practice (GP) Liaison Unit has led the development of new guidelines for Shared Maternity Care Affiliates (SMCA) accredited to provide Shared Maternity Care at the Women’s. Developed in partnership with the Shared Maternity Care Collaborative, comprised of the Women’s, the Mercy Hospital for Women, Western Health (Sunshine Hospital) and Northern Health, it is anticipated these new guidelines will lead to a strengthening of the quality of care provided to women undertaking shared care. |
Shared maternity Care is a model of care in which a woman is cared for by both hospital staff and an accredited community-based GP, obstetrician or midwife throughout her pregnancy. Shared Maternity Care aims to provide a high quality community-based, holistic, safe and culturally appropriate model of care for women. At the Women’s, more than 700 SMCA currently provide shared care to approximately 1500 women per year.
As this model of care requires excellent communication and system delivery across two separate health sectors, the GP Liaison Unit considers the development of guidelines to be critical to improving quality patient care. Extensive consultation and collaboration between SMCA, hospital clinicians and services, and women who have experienced Shared Maternity Care, have underpinned the development of these guidelines.
The guidelines aim to:
- Delineate roles, responsibilities and expectations of different providers
- Clarify pathways of referral, care and support
- Reduce confusion for Affiliates and hospital clinicians providing shared maternity care
- Assist providers in the provision of evidence based care and initiatives to support quality maternity care.