Quality standard

This quality standard covers care for pregnant women who may be at risk of, or have symptoms and signs of, starting labour and giving birth early (preterm). It describes high-quality care in priority areas for improvement.

It does not cover care for women who are pregnant with twins or triplets, which is included in NICE’s quality standard on multiple pregnancy: twin and triplet pregnancies.

In August 2019, this quality standard was updated to reflect changes to the guidance on prophylactic vaginal progesterone and prophylactic cervical cerclage. For more information see update information.

How to use NICE quality standards and how we develop them

Quality standards help you improve the quality of care you provide or commission. They apply in England and Wales (see the UK government website and Welsh government website). Decisions on how they apply in Scotland and Northern Ireland are made by ministers in the Scottish government and Northern Ireland Executive.

Find out how to use quality standards and how we develop them. We check our quality standards every August to make sure they are up to date.