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PD.05 Neonatal Outcomes for a large Freestanding Midwifery Unit (FMU)
  1. G Cooper-Hobson1,
  2. Z Khandwalla1,
  3. C Broome2,
  4. V Devendra Kumar1,
  5. S Sivashankar1
  1. 1Lancashire Women and Newborn Centre, Burnley General Hospital, Burnley, UK
  2. 2Blackburn Birth Centre, Blackburn, UK


Aims To determine transfer rates, reasons for transfer and outcomes for babies born at our FMU with nearly 1000 births/year and compare this with available literature.

Method Retrospective analysis of neonatal transfers from FMU to neonatal unit and postnatal ward from November 2010 to October 2012.

Results There were 1811 deliveries at the FMU during the specified period with 47 neonatal transfers, giving a transfer rate of 2.5% which is comparable to 3% reported nationally. Respiratory distress and Low birth weight were the two main reasons for transfer.

Adverse neonatal event was defined for the purpose of comparison to national figures as; early neonatal death, encephalopathy, meconium aspiration, brachial plexus injury, fracture clavicle / humerus. Incidence of this was 2.7/1000 births, which is lesser than what has been reported nationally at 4.3/1000. Neonatal mortality rate was 1.1/1000 live births, which is the same as reported nationally (1.1/1000).

Conclusions With almost 1000 births/year in our FMU, we have seen that our transfer rate for neonatal transfers and perinatal outcome are comparable with available literature. Excellent collaborative working between FMU and Consultant led maternity unit and neonatal team has helped to ensure our FMU provides a very safe and effective service for low risk women.


  1. Rogers, C, Pickersgill J, Palmer J, Broadbent M. Informing choices: outcomes for women at a stand-alone birth centre. British Journal of Midwifery. Jan 2010;18(1):8–15

  2. Birthplace in England Collaborative Group. Perinatal and maternal outcomes by planned place of birth for healthy women with low risk pregnancies: the Birthplace in England national prospective cohort study. BMJ. Nov 2011; [Accessed November 2011]

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