Protecting human rights in childbirth

Content and topics

What our core training covers

  • An introduction to human rights and where they come from (primarily the European Convention of Human Rights/Human Rights Act 1998)  
  • An exploration of key common law judgements relevant to maternity care including Montgomery vs Lanarkshire  
  • Consideration of the implications of human rights law and common law cases for maternity care, and what legal obligations doctors and midwives have as NHS employees
  • Practical discussion of case studies and common scenarios in small groups, e.g. consent for induction, maternal request caesarean, request to give birth in a birth centre by a woman who does not meet guidelines

Training courses can be tailored to focus on particular challenges such as: 

  • How can we deliver safe and personalised care? 
  • Do women have a right to out of guidelines care? 
  • What really is informed consent? 
  • How do I know if a woman has mental capacity to make decisions in labour? 
  • How can we reduce litigation and complaints in maternity care? 
  • Could we do more to prevent birth trauma rather than treating it? 

Practical communication skills 

We can also offer training that focuses on practical communications skills and language to equip healthcare professionals to: 

  • have choice conversations with women that facilitate providing the information women need, giving a professional recommendation and exploring alternative options, to achieve informed consent 
  • sensitively challenge behaviour by colleagues that is disrespectful or unsafe
  • reflect on appropriate informal and formal escalation routes if needed to protect women’s rights and safety

This session gives healthcare professionals a safe space to develop their communication practice and can be offered as a stand-alone half day course or combined with our core content as a full day course.