Birthplace Decisions Leaflet

Closed 3 Jul 2024

Opened 3 Jun 2024


This survey seeks your views on the Scottish Government’s proposed Birthplace Decisions leaflet which provides information to help women decide where to give birth.

In 2017, the Scottish Government published ‘The Best Start: A Five-Year Forward Plan for Maternity and Neonatal Care in Scotland’. This is our plan for improving maternity and neonatal services in Scotland, focussing on the individual needs of all of Scotland’s families. It sets out a number of recommendations to help us achieve a truly family-centred, safe and compassionate approach which recognises everyone’s unique circumstances and preferences.

A key objective of the Best Start is to make sure women and their families have the information and evidence they need to make informed decisions about their care and that of their baby. Choosing where to give birth is an important decision, and it is essential that pregnant women and their partners have access to high-quality, clear, evidence-based information to help them make this choice. The Scottish Government has developed a new leaflet on Birthplace Decisions which will be given to pregnant women by their midwife or doctor. This leaflet can be used to support discussions with midwives and doctors about where to give birth.

This leaflet is a national information source, relevant to pregnant women and their families across Scotland. It is based on the Birth Place Decisions leaflet developed by King’s College London, and includes the most recent evidence and tailored to the Scottish healthcare context. If you or your partner has given birth in Scotland, you may have received the King’s College London leaflet, or have been directed towards the information on Ready Steady Baby, Badgernet or NHS inform. You may also have been provided local information from your Midwife. This leaflet does not replace other sources of information, but provides national, standardised core information that should be available to all women in Scotland.

The leaflet has been co-produced with the Pathways working group and reviewed by the Best Start Implementation Programme Board. The working group was originally convened before the Covid-19 pandemic and reconvened in 2022. Members of the working group included clinical experts, educators, the Senior Medical Officer for Maternity and Women’s Health, and the Chief Midwifery Officer for Scotland.

Members of Maternity Voices Partnerships were invited to review an earlier version of this leaflet, and we have made some changes in light of their feedback.

Read the leaflet

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Why your views matter

We are seeking your views on the Birthplace Decisions leaflet and would very much value your opinion. We want to make sure it is clear, informative and supports decision making. We would particularly like to hear from you if:

  • You are pregnant or have recently given birth
  • your partner is pregnant or has recently given birth
  • you support pregnant women and their partners
  • you are a member of a patient representative group or Maternity Voices Partnership
  • you work in a relevant field of healthcare
  • you are training in a relevant field of healthcare
  • you work in a relevant field of healthcare management
  • you work in healthcare education

This list is not exhaustive, and we welcome responses from all interested parties.


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