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Positive Birth Conference 2016: Informed Choice



Informed Choice

Information About the Speakers:

Dr Mandie Scamell, City University London

‘She can’t come here!’  The ethics of choice of place of birth

Dr Mandie Scamell is a medical anthropologist and midwife specialising in risk and the maternity services in the UK. Mandie joined City University London in 2013 having previously been part of the Florence Nightingale School of Nursing and Midwifery at Kings College London.  Her main area of work has been on midwifery care in the UK, with particular interests in clinical governance and institutionalised risk management technologies and in the culture and organisation of maternity care.

Suzanne Lee, City University London

‘Risk Perception in High Risk Pregnancy’

Suzanne is a midwifery lecturer who joined City University London in 2013. She previously worked as a midwife at Brighton and Sussex University Hospitals NHS Trust. Her main area of interest is antenatal care and in particular midwifery care for women with high risk pregnancies. She is currently undertaking a PhD researching risk perception in high risk pregnancy.

Lucia Rocca-Ihenacho, City University London

'Mindfulness: a key feature of freestanding midwifery unit care?'

A senior clinician and an academic with broad experience of leadership and management of staff and resources, Lucia is passionate about supporting the development of positive team culture and organisational change facilitation.
Her track record includes contributing to the creation of innovative ways of delivering maternity care with a public health focus such as a case-loading midwifery team for vulnerable women and a freestanding midwifery unit, which achieves a 45% rate of waterbirths and a 9% CS rate.

She has experience of mentoring midwives in clinical practice in a wide range of settings from home births in London to the mountains of rural Afghanistan.
She sees supporting Optimum Birth as a key aspect of providing high quality care. This includes supporting all women optimising physiological care, including those with complicating conditions, which might preclude then from persuing a completely normal birth.

Lucia worked until October 2015 as a Consultant Midwife in Public Health at St George’s Healthcare NHS Trust and is now based at City University London where she works as a Lecturer and researcher.

She has just been awarded an NIHR Knowledge Mobilisation Fellowship with the aim of implementing recommendations for place of birth for healthy women having straightforward pregnancies.

Lucia is one of the co-founders of the Midwifery Unit Network (MUNet), which is a community of practice aiming at sharing best practices and skills around midwifery units. She has just facilitated the creation of MUNet Europe and is now working on the creation of the MUNet Academy, focused on philosophy, knowledge and skills development.

She is invited internationally to provide consultancy on midwifery-led care and on how to set up Midwifery Units.

Discussion Panel: Do Maternity Services Enable Informed Choice?

Cathy Warwick CBE, Royal College of Midwives

Cathy is Chief Executive of the Royal College of Midwives (RCM), one of the world's oldest and largest midwifery organisations, representing the majority of the UK’s midwives.Cathy began her career by gaining a nursing degree at Edinburgh University in 1975. She then completed the one year midwifery course at Queen Charlotte’s Hospital in London in 1976, and worked as a midwife across a variety of clinical settings in hospitals and in the community. Her work has led to invitations to sit on many national maternity policy committees, and she has been Chair of the Midwifery Committee at the Nursing and Midwifery Council, and Chair of the maternity working group contributing to the Darzi report, Healthcare for London.Cathy has also written and published widely on midwifery issues and lectures and speaks nationally and internationally. She was awarded a visiting professorship by King’s College, London in 2004, She received a CBE for Services to Healthcare in 2006, and was awarded an Honorary Doctorate from St George’s and Kingston University, London in 2007.

Sheena Byrom OBE, Freelance Midwifery Consultant

Sheena is a practising midwife, and worked within the NHS for more than 35 years. Sheena was one of the UK’s first consultant midwives, and as a head of midwifery successfully helped to lead the development of three birth centres in East Lancashire. Sheena is a Board member of the Royal College of Midwives (RCM), a member of the RCM’s Better Births initiative, Patron of StudentMidwife.Net and Chair of the Iolanthe Midwifery Trust. Sheena recently worked as a midwifery expert at North Cumbria University Hospitals NHS Trust helping them to develop midwifery led units, and she is one of the project leads for an exciting development, the Midwifery Unit Network.

Sheena’s midwifery memoirs, Catching Babies, is a Sunday Times bestseller, and her absolute passion is promoting normal physiological birth, and a positive childbirth experience for all women. Her latest book, The Roar Behind the Silence: why kindness, compassion and respect matter in maternity care is jointly edited with Soo Downe, and together they hope the book will used as a resource to promote positive childbirth throughout the world. Sheena was awarded an OBE in 2011 for services to midwifery, and was made an Honorary Fellow of the Royal College of Midwives in 2015. Sheena actively lobbies for maternity service improvements through several social media channels. Sheena is currently a midwife consultant, and lectures nationally and internationally on midwifery and childbirth related topics.

Milli Hill, Positive Birth Movement

Millie is a writer and the mother of three small children, and the founder of the Positive Birth Movement. She is a columnist for Telegraph Women where she writes about the experience of birth, breastfeeding and early parenting.

Presented by the Centre for Maternal and Child Health Research


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When & where

9.00am - 4.00pmTuesday 19th July 2016

ELG01 Drysdale Building City, University of London Northampton Square London EC1V 0HB United Kingdom

Contact Details

City Events Team

+44 (0)20 7040 8037

Contact the organiser