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Midwifery screening competencies tool


UK NSC Resources mapped to NMC Competencies for Pre-registration Midwifery Education: A Resource for Midwife Educators

The UK NSC is committed to provide all universities & student midwives with a resource mapped to the NMC competencies for pre-registration midwifery education in relation to 'informed choice' and 'support for NHS antenatal and newborn screening programmes'.

Intended outcomes for universities and students:

  • Assist in meeting NMC competencies for entry to NMC Register
  • Contemporary information regarding policy & practice of the NHS antenatal and newborn screening programmes
  • Knowledge of what screening is, what the appropriate screening pathways are & the importance of facilitating informed choice
  • Links to further screening information, CPD materials, the UK NSC website & other resources
  • Assist students with reflection on and in practice and support relevant assignment tasks

We welcome your feedback on this resource, including any comments on how it could be improved or used more widely.

A hard copy resource for Student Midwives commencing training during 2011 has been produced and provided by the UK National Screening Committee (UK NSC) to support learning around the NHS antenatal and newborn screening programmes. The resource has been designed to provide students with:

  • Pocket and diary sized resources to assist when discussing the screening programmes with women and their families, helping them to make informed choices. 
  • Links to the education and training resources developed by the UK NSC to support your further learning. 

The resource can also be accessed online for students already in training.

NB: The new screening eLearning module has now been launched. This will provide students and qualified midwives with a interactive and informative learning experience, covering all screening programmes, all essential information and offering top tips, a short quiz and a certificate of completion.

NMC Competency

UK NSC Antenatal & Newborn Screening Resource

1: Initial consultation between the woman and the midwife


  • Meeting this competency at all 3 levels can be supported by delivery of lectures/study sessions by recognised experts in the field e.g. Regional or Local Screening Co-ordinator. Facilitation would usually be undertaken as part of core activity
  • Contact your Regional Antenatal and Newborn Screening Teams
Women can expect/trust a newly registered midwife to:  
  • Be confident in sharing information about common antenatal screening tests
  • Screening Tests for You and Your Baby booklet
    This national booklet, given to all pregnant women in England covers all NHS antenatal and newborn screening tests. The midwife can take the opportunity to discuss each antenatal and newborn screening programme at the relevant time during pregnancy and the booklet can be used to illustrate points and signpost to further information if required
  • Key Message Slides
    Offer a quick update on the policy and practice of the 6 NHS antenatal/newborn screening programmes
  • Resource Cards
    Online version of the cards sent to midwives, health visitors, sonographers and GP surgeries

By end of the first progression point:


  • Is aware of the NHS managed antenatal screening programmes that are offered to pregnant women
  • Participates in sharing information with women about common antenatal screening tests
  • Can respect the decision of the woman to decline services or treatment

For entry to the register:


  • Acts professionally to ensure that personal judgements, prejudices, values, attitudes and beliefs do not compromise the provision of care
  • Can accurately interpret data/results and share this information sensitively with women, including the ability to discuss any further action/consequences as necessary
  • Can conduct general information sharing (eg. optimum times for testing) as appropriate through a variety of multi-media channels, such as texting
  • Can effectively share information in challenging circumstances, such as a previous bereavement, or affected/high risk screening result
  • Is able to seek out required information about less common/specialised antenatal screening tests

2. Be the first point of contact when seeking advice and / or information about being pregnant

For entry to the register:

  • Be confident in working in a variety of models of service  delivery which encourage early access to care

3. Normal labour and birth

Women can expect/trust a newly registered midwife to:
  • Facilitate the mother and baby to remain together.

For entry to the register:

  • Accurately assess the health and wellbeing of the newborn baby

4. Initiation and continuance of breastfeeding

Women can expect/trust a newly registered midwife to:
  • Recognise appropriate infant growth and development, including where referral for further advice / action is required

For entry to the register:

  • Acts upon the need to refer when there is a deviation from appropriate infant growth

E-learning for the NHS Screening Programmes moved to Health Education England's e-learning for Healthcare (e-LfH) website on 3 April 2017.

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