Skip to main content

Publication, Part of

Maternity Services Monthly Statistics February 2019, Experimental statistics

Official statistics, Experimental statistics


Update 08/07/2019: Please note that the Delivery Method for Previous Births file has been replaced since original publication.

Whilst the data in the file is correct, the update rectifies a technical error in the file whereby one of the interactive slicers had become disconnected from the underlying data and therefore unable to refresh after a new selection.

This affected the information about number of providers submitting data items for that piece of analysis (table 3). Tables 1 and 2 were unaffected. We apologise for any inconvenience this may have caused.


This is a report on NHS-funded maternity services in England for February 2019, using data submitted to the Maternity Services Data Set (MSDS). The MSDS has been developed to help achieve better outcomes of care for mothers, babies and children. The MSDS is a patient-level 'secondary uses' data set that re-uses clinical and operational data for purposes other than direct patient care, such as commissioning and clinical audit. It captures key information at each stage of the maternity service care pathway in NHS-funded maternity services, such as those provided by GP practices and hospitals. The data collected include mother's demographics, booking appointments, admissions and re-admissions, screening tests, labour and delivery along with baby's demographics, diagnoses and screening tests. The following analysis files are published within the zip file 'Additional experimental analysis using MSDS data' for the relevant month due to low data quality and completeness:

• Delivery method by previous births

• Delivery method by Robson group

• Smoking status at delivery (for births one month earlier)

• Postpartum haemorrhage and other maternal critical incidents (for births one month earlier)

• Antenatal pathway level

• Births without intervention.

These statistics are classified as experimental and should be used with caution. Experimental statistics are new official statistics undergoing evaluation. More information about experimental statistics can be found on the UK Statistics Authority website.

Key Facts

This report contains key information based on the submissions that have been made by providers and will focus on data relating to activity that occurred in February 2019.

· For February 2019 data, 130 providers successfully submitted data for the MSDS and 2 providers did not submit data. We are working closely with providers who did not respond and expect coverage and data quality to increase over time.

· Among women that had a booking appointment in February 2019, 57 per cent were within the first 10 weeks of pregnancy. This varied across regions with the highest proportion (63 per cent) of women having appointments in the first 10 weeks in the South West Commissioning Region and the lowest proportion (49 per cent) in the London Commissioning Region.

· At the time of their booking appointment, 12 per cent of women with a recorded smoking status were smokers, and 83 per cent were non-smokers. The remaining 5 per cent were recorded as ‘Unknown’.

· Of the births that had a recorded delivery method, 57 per cent were spontaneous vaginal births, 11 per cent had instrumental assistance, 14 per cent were elective caesarean sections and 16 per cent were emergency caesarean sections. The proportion of births by emergency caesarean was highest in the London Commissioning Region (16 per cent) and lowest in the South East Commissioning Region (16 per cent).

· NICE recommend skin-to-skin contact to promote breastfeeding initiation among women that gave birth at 37 weeks gestation or later, 82 per cent had skin-to-skin contact with their baby within one hour of birth.

· 75 per cent of babies received maternal or donor breast milk as their first feed.

Administrative Sources

Maternity Services Data Set

Last edited: 9 July 2019 2:27 pm