UK Obstetric Surveillance System (UKOSS)

Applications sought for new member of the UKOSS Steering Committee: Welsh Representative

The UK Obstetric Surveillance System (UKOSS), a joint initiative between the National Perinatal Epidemiology Unit and the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists, currently has a vacancy for a Welsh Representative on its Steering Committee.

UKOSS was launched in February 2005 and is designed to be used to study a range of uncommon conditions in pregnancy.  It is also supported by the Royal College of Midwives, the Obstetric Anaesthetists Association, the NCT, the Faculty of Public Health and Public Health England.  

Currently, all 198 consultant-led maternity units in the UK contribute to UKOSS and the system has been extremely successful over the past few years in collecting information on women with rare disorders of pregnancy (conditions with an estimated incidence of less than one in 2000 births), allowing us to document the incidence, management and outcomes of these conditions, and thus to contribute to improvement of maternity care in the future.  More information on UKOSS can be found at

The UKOSS Steering Committee is multi-disciplinary and meets three times a year.  Its main roles are to consider applications for inclusion of new studies on the UKOSS programme and to monitor the progress of ongoing studies.  Membership is not remunerated but meetings may be considered as part of continuing professional development.   

The applications will be assessed on the basis of the following criteria:


  • Evidence of contribution to UKOSS at a local level; for example, co-ordinating UKOSS reporting at a local level, returning monthly report cards and completing data collection forms
  • Evidence of forging links within and without ones own professional group and with wider multi-disciplinary teams


  • Evidence of interest in UKOSS; for example, proposing new topic areas, making study applications and/or using UKOSS data in presentations or publications
  • Research, audit and confidential enquiry or clinical governance experience in obstetrics/maternity care
  • Experience of committee work (local or national)

For an informal discussion about the role, please contact Melanie O’Connor, UKOSS Programme Manager ( or Marian Knight, Head of UKOSS (  If you would like to apply, please submit a two page CV and a short covering letter stating which position you are interested in and why you would like to undertake the role to UKOSS at

The closing date for applications is 31st August 2019

UKOSS: A national system to study rare disorders of pregnancy


To develop a UK-wide Obstetric Surveillance System to describe the epidemiology of a variety of uncommon disorders of pregnancy.


  • To use this system to lessen the burden on reporting clinicians of multiple requests for information from different sources.
  • To enable the conduct of parallel cohort or case-control as well as descriptive epidemiological studies.
  • To use the knowledge gained to make practical improvements in prevention and treatment and allow for more effective service planning.
  • To provide a system capable of responding rapidly to emerging conditions of major public health importance.

Why study rare disorders?

Rare conditions of pregnancy:

  • Are under-researched.
  • Our understanding of them is poor.
  • Any interventions used in current clinical practice are rarely based on robust evidence.
  • Routine sources of information are limited or unreliable.
  • Comprehensive studies require a large collaboration to identify relatively small numbers of women.
  • Requests for information from multiple sources about different uncommon disorders can place an unacceptable burden on reporting clinicians.

This single, routine, reporting system avoids these problems and has the benefit of allowing the range of conditions under surveillance to change over time.

Download Powerpoint Presentation

Introduction to UKOSS presentation