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Exploring the dynamics of personal, professional and interprofessional ethics$
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Divya Jindal-Snape and Elizabeth F.S. Hannah

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9781447308997

Published to University Press Scholarship Online: September 2014

DOI: 10.1332/policypress/9781447308997.001.0001

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date: 22 October 2017

Protecting unborn babies

Protecting unborn babies

professional and interprofessional ethical considerations for social work and midwifery

Chapter:
(p.151) Ten Protecting unborn babies
Source:
Exploring the dynamics of personal, professional and interprofessional ethics
Author(s):

Ann V. Hodson

Ruth Deery

Publisher:
Policy Press
DOI:10.1332/policypress/9781447308997.003.0010

When child protection concerns are identified during pregnancy a pre-birth assessment will occur. The resulting assessment may be used as a basis for legal intervention that might ultimately decide if it is safe for a mother to retain the care of her baby, or if the baby should be removed from her care at birth. Such decisions have enormous consequences and an understanding of the underpinning ethical principles are essential for an appropriate assessment and decision making process. Midwives and social workers have key roles to play in pre-birth assessment and yet this aspect of their work has received minimal research attention and the ethical tensions have been under explored. This chapter outlines some of the inherent issues that social workers and midwives face when completing pre-birth assessment, not least of which are the balancing of the needs of the child and the rights of the pregnant woman.

Keywords:   child protection, pre-birth assessment, ethics, midwives, social workers

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