Research Note: Interprofessional education in maternity services: Is there evidence to support policy?

By | 28th November 2016

Against a backdrop of poor maternity and obstetric care, identified in the Morecambe Bay Inquiry, the UK government has recently called for improvements and heralded investment in training. Given the complex mix of professionals working closely together in maternity services addressing the lack of joined up continuing professional development (CPD) is necessary. This led Davies, Fletcher & Reeves to ask whether there is evidence of IPE in maternity services. As part of a wider systematic review of IPE, we searched for studies related to CPD in maternity services between May 2005 and June 2014. A total of 206 articles were identified with 24 articles included after initial screening. Further review revealed only eight articles related to maternity care, none of which met the inclusion criteria for the main systematic review. The main reasons for non-inclusion included weak evaluation, a focus on undergraduate IPE, and articles referring to paediatric/neonatal care only. Fewer articles were found than anticipated given the number of different professions working together in maternity services. This gap suggests further investigation is warranted.

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