Midwives with experience of home and midwifery unit births needed as case assessors for the ESMiE confidential enquiry


Every year in the UK around 400 babies born around their due date who were alive at the start of labour die during labour or in the first month of life from problems that occur during labour or birth. A small proportion of these deaths occur in births where labour care was initially provided in a midwifery unit or at home. The purpose of the ESMiE confidential enquiry is to find out if there are any aspects of care that could be changed to prevent similar deaths in the future. We are currently looking for experienced practicing midwives who would like to contribute to the enquiry by acting as case assessors. We are particularly looking for midwives with experience of labour care in midwifery-led settings (particularly home births and births in freestanding midwifery units) who are under-represented in our current panel of assessors.

What is involved?

Being an assessor involves the following:

  • Agreeing to attend at least one assessment panel meeting to discuss a small sample of cases (normally eight). These are full-day meetings (normally 10am to 4pm) which will be held at a central location in Birmingham between October 2017 and spring 2018.
  • Prior to the panel meeting, you will need to review the records of the cases assigned to you using a secure online viewing system. You will be given access to the cases assigned to you 3-4 weeks prior to the panel meeting. A checklist will be provided to help you review each case in a structured way.Assessors need to be familiar with standards and guidelines and also need to be able to devote sufficient time to this task, which typically takes 2-3 days per panel.
  • You will also be asked to be lead assessor for one case. This means that you will present an overview of the case to the panel and highlight key aspects of care that you consider merit discussion
  • Each panel meeting will involve 8-10 health care professionals, including several midwives with experience covering midwifery-led settings, labour wards and bereavement care. Panels will also include obstetricians, a neonatologist and a pathologist. Panels discuss the salient aspects of care for each case and, with the guidance of a neutral chairperson, reach a consensus view about the quality of care provided (good and bad).

Being an assessor means that you are participating in national audit and research which counts as participatory Continuing Professional Development (CPD) for the purposes of NMC Revalidation. Certificates will be provided confirming your contribution. The role is not remunerated, but your travel expenses will be paid.

What to do if you are interested in becoming an assessor

If you would like to know more about becoming an assessor please email the Confidential Enquiry team at mbrraceCE@le.ac.uk or phone the MBRRACE-UK office at Leicester on 0116 252 5425.

How to apply

Please send a short email to Ian Gallimore (mbrraceCE@le.ac.uk) indicating why you are interested in becoming a panel member and attaching a brief curriculum vitae summarising your experience.

Updated: Friday, 21 July 2017 12:50 (v1)