Date of Submission



Background: Normal birth, by common definition, is achieved with minimal or no intervention and is widely regarded as the safest method of birth for healthy mothers and babies. There is evidence to support delaying women’s admission to birthing suite until labour has established to avoid unnecessary interventions, such as epidurals and augmentation of labour. Reflecting this evidence base a large metropolitan hospital (study site) introduced an early labour care model in September 2012, to improve the flow of work and provide better accommodation and an alternative care option for women and their support people during early labour. This involved creating a clinical framework consisting of clinical decision-making tools and pathways to increase the level of safety and quality care offered to those women not suitable for home or transfer to birth suite, and the creation of a dedicated early labour area separate to the hospital’s assessment unit.


School of Nursing, Midwifery & Paramedicine

Document Type


Access Rights

Open Access


127 pages

Degree Name

Master of Midwifery (Research) (MMidw(Res))


Faculty of Health Sciences