NICE clinical guidelines advise the NHS on caring for people with specific conditions or diseases and the treatments they should receive. The information applies to people using the NHS in England and Wales.
This information explains the advice about the check-ups women attend during their pregnancies that is set out in NICE clinical guideline 110.
If you are pregnant, you need to have check-ups from a midwife or doctor several times during your pregnancy, starting as soon as you know you are pregnant. This is called 'antenatal care'. The midwife or doctor will give you advice to help you and your baby stay healthy, but will also be looking for signs that you might need treatment to stop you or your baby getting ill. Although it does not happen very often, on rare occasions pregnant women or their babies can become seriously ill or die if they do not get the treatment or help they need. Early and regular check-ups will help to pick up any problems.
Yes, if you need extra support to make sure you get your antenatal check-ups and any treatment you or your baby needs.
Some women may need extra because of their personal circumstances, such as problems with alcohol or drugs, or because they have a violent partner or family member. A woman's age may also mean that extra support is needed – for example, young women might feel uncomfortable having check-ups in a clinic where most of the other women are older. Women who have moved here from another country may not know how to find a midwife or doctor, or may not understand English very well.