Library Europe's largest nursing-specific collection

Midwifery

'Midwives work at the heart of the community, as the primary co-ordinator of care for all pregnant, labouring and postnatal women. They support, guide and care for mother, baby and family through the months of pregnancy, during the birth itself, and afterwards in the postnatal period.’ (RCN, 2015, Become a midwife). Use this guide to find information resources about midwifery including books, reports and journal articles.

Last updated: 02/08/2021

Key Resources

Cover of RCN publication on bladder and bowel care in childbirth Royal College of Nursing (2021) Bladder and bowel care in childbirth: RCN guidance. London: RCN.
Royal College of Nursing (2017) Clinical nurse specialist in early pregnancy care, London: RCN. Royal College of Nursing (2017) Clinical nurse specialist in early pregnancy care. London: RCN.
Royal College of Nursing (2019) Female genital mutilation. An RCN resource for nursing and midwifery practice (4th edn), London: RCN.

Royal College of Nursing (2020) Female genital mutilation: RCN guidance for sexual health care. London: RCN.

RCN Domestic Abuse Royal College of Nursing (2020) Guidance for nurses and midwives to support those affected by domestic abuse. London: RCN.
Cover of RCN publication on multiple births midwives standards Royal College of Nursing (2021) Multiple births midwife standard: RCN guidance for midwifery and nursing. London: RCN.
RCN - nurses in maternity care report Royal College of Nursing (2019) Nurses in maternity care: RCN report. London: RCN.
Guidance cover Royal College of Nursing (2020) RCN guidance conscientious objection (termination of pregnancy): position statement. London: RCN.
Royal College of Nursing (2020) RCN nursing education in termination of pregnancy services, London: RCN. Royal College of Nursing (2020) RCN nursing education in termination of pregnancy services. London: RCN.
Guidance cover Royal College of Nursing (2020) RCN termination of pregnancy (induced abortion) 2013: position statement. London: RCN.
Cover of RCN publication on termination of pregnancy Royal College of Nursing (2020) Termination of pregnancy: an RCN nursing framework. London: RCN. 
RCN page on domestic abuse
RCN page on female genital mutilation
RCN page on Modern slavery & human trafficking
Nursing and Midwifery Council (2019) Future midwife. London: NMC.
Royal College of Midwives (2016) The RCM standards for midwifery services in the UK. London: RCM.
Guide cover Royal College of Nursing (2020) Modern slavery and trafficking: guidance for nurses and midwives. London: RCN.
Formula feeds : RCN guidance for nurses caring for infants and mothers Royal College of Nursing (2016) Formula feeds: RCN guidance for nurses caring for infants and mothers. 3rd edn. London: RCN.
Nursing and Midwifery Council (no date) Standards for competence for registered midwives. London: NMC.
Nursing and Midwifery Council (2018) The Code: professional standards of practice and behaviour for nurses, midwives and nursing associates. London: NMC.
Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists: Guidelines
NICE Evidence: search for pregnancy and childbirth guidance
  • Please check that guidance is applicable for your country.
    View Page
The Cochrane Library: Browse by topic.
  • Systematic reviews from the Cochrane Library. Topics include pregnancy and childbirth.
    View page
We would like to thank the RCN Midwifery member community for their input into the development of this subject guide.

Books

Baston, H & Hall, J. (2018) Midwifery essentials: antenatal. Edinburgh: Churchill Livingstone. 
Boyle M (2016) Emergencies around childbirth: a handbook for midwives, Boca Raton: CRC Press. Boyle M (2016) Emergencies around childbirth: a handbook for midwives. Boca Raton: CRC Press.
Davy L and Houghton D (2013) The midwive's pocket formulary. Davy L and Houghton D (2013) The midwife’s pocket formulary. 3rd edn. Edinburgh: Churchill Livingstone.
Fleming V and Mander R (2014) Becoming a midwife (2nd edition), Abingdon: Routledge. Fleming V and Mander R (2014) Becoming a midwife. 2nd edn. Abingdon: Routledge.
Hunter A, Schott J, Henley A and Kohner N (2016) Pregnancy loss and the death of a baby: guidelines for professionals. 4th edn. Coventry: Tantamount.
Jefford E  and Jomeen J (2020) Empowering decision-making in midwifery: a global perspective. Abingdon: Routledge.
Johnson R and Taylor W (2016) Skills for midwifery practice. Johnson R and Taylor W (2016) Skills for midwifery practice. Edinburgh: Elsevier.
Kenny L and Myers, J (2016) Obstetrics by ten teachers, Boca Raton: CRC Press. Kenny L and Myers, J (2016) Obstetrics by ten teachers. Boca Raton: CRC Press.
Lindsay P, Bagness C and Peate I (2018) Midwifery Skills at a glance. Hoboken: Wiley.
Lomax A (2015) Examination of the newborn. Lomax A (2015) Examination of the newborn: an evidence-based guide. 2nd edn. Chichester, West Sussex: Wiley Blackwell.
Lumsden H and Holmes (2010) Care of the newborn by ten teachers. Lumsden H and Holmes D (2010) Care of the newborn by ten teachers. London: Hodder Arnold.
MacDonald S and MacGill-Cuerden (2017) Mayes' midwifery. MacDonald S and MacGill-Cuerden J (2017) Mayes’ midwifery. 15th edn. London: Balliere Tindall.
Marshall J and Raynow D (2010) Advancing skils in midwifery practice. Marshall J and Raynow D (2010) Advancing skills in midwifery practice. Edinburgh: Churchill Livingstone.
Narayan H (2016) Compendium for the antenatal care of high-risk pregnancies, Oxford: Oxford University Press. Narayan H (2016) Compendium for the antenatal care of high-risk pregnancies. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Peate I and Hamilton C (2013) The student's guide to becoming a midwife. Peate I and Hamilton C (eds.) (2013) The student's guide to becoming a midwife. Chichester: Wiley-Blackwell.
Wilks J (2015) Choices in pregnancy and childbirth. Wilks J (2015) Choices in pregnancy and childbirth : a guide to options for health professionals, midwives and holistic practitioners. London: Singing Dragon.

Book subject searches

Use these links to see details of books the RCN libraries hold on each topic.

Journal articles

Journals

Databases

Maternity and Infant Care

Nursing History Collection

Leap N (2013) The midwife's tale. Leap N (2013) The midwife’s tale: an oral history from handywoman to professional midwife. Great Britain: Scarlet Press.
McIntosh T (2012) A social history of maternity and childbirth. McIntosh T (2012) A social history of maternity and childbirth: key themes in maternity care. London: Routledge.
Worth J (2008) Call the midwife. Worth J (2008) Call the midwife. Great Britain: Orion Publishing.

Special collections

Our Permanent Collection consists of nursing specific core items and rare items. It is viewable by appointment at the RCN Library and Heritage Centre. Here is a small selection of items from our collection.
Pritchard E (1934) The new-born baby a manual for the use of midwives and maternity nurses. London: Henry Kimton.
Radcliffe W (1967) Milestones in midwifery. Bristol: John Wright
Robinson H (1916) The midwives pronouncing dictionary of obstetrical and gynaecological terms. London: Scientific Press.

Historical journals

Nursing Record/British Journal of Nursing (1888-1956)
  • Digitised journal available online.
    View page

Archives

The RCN Archive contains many references to midwifery within the personal papers collections. One of the most significant midwifery collections in our archive is that of midwifery tutor Gertrude Baker. Mrs Baker collected material for a museum of midwifery, the papers of which have been donated to the RCN. These include research and career information of not only Mrs Baker, but many individual midwives who gave her their own collections towards her work, including certificates, badges and photographs. For more details search the Archive catalogue for RefNo C502.

Upcoming events relating to this subject guide

  • 25 Nov 2021 Online

    RCN Wales Domestic Abuse Conference: Tackling Difficult Conversations

    This conference will explore the perceptions of surviving domestic abuse and the domestic abuse cycle, discuss how healthcare staff can be supported if exposed to domestic abuse, and consider the impact of domestic abuse on children, the promotion of trauma informed approaches to practice and demonstrate an example of best practice in supporting families. You do not need to be based in Wales to join us for this event.  

Advertisement

Page last updated - 02/08/2021