Migrant maternity in the age of superdiversity

As numbers and range of ethnicities and immigration statuses of new migrants entering the UK have increased, a wide range of social policy challenges have emerged. Migrant women’s access to maternity services is a problem in the UK, and particularly the West Midlands. Infant mortality rates in the West Midlands migrant population are the highest in the UK. Research undertaken by Dr Jenny Phillimore for the Department of Health in 2010/2011 explored the issues facing migrant women giving birth and the challenges experienced by service providers supporting them. The research found that the lack of understanding by midwives about the barriers and constraints experienced by migrant women was one of the key obstacles to delivering appropriate services. Midwives outlined their need for more information about the situation of pregnant migrants while third sector organisations called for midwives and other professionals to be better informed. The findings can be accessed here (LINKS PLS)

The migrant maternity research has been widely disseminated to policymakers and practitioners and formed the basis of evidence delivered to the House of Commons 20/11/12 to the Parliamentary Inquiry into Impact of Asylum Support for Children. The research was the subject of two ESRC Festival of Social Science events on the 5th of November held with midwives, trainees midwives and maternity professionals at City Hospital, Birmingham and Department of Health West Midlands in conjunction with civil society organisations ASIRTHope Projects and the Bethel Doula Project.

Download Jenny Phillimore's presentation from the event 'Delivering in an age of superdiversity' (PDF)

Download Sarah Taal's (Hope Projects) presentation from the event 'Maternity support for migrant women' (PDF)

Further information

For further information about Migrant Maternity Research please contact Jenny Phillimore, j.a.phillimore@bham.ac.uk.