Reducing Antenatal Health Inequalities: Outcome Focused Evidence into Action Guidance

This guidance details the specific actions needed to strengthen antenatal healthcare at NHS Board and national level.


1. MSAG is the Scottish Government convened group that brings together key stakeholders from Maternity Services, the Royal Colleges, and the Scottish Health Council with the Scottish Government. The key aim of MSAG is to provide national leadership, guidance and support in the formulation and implementation of Scottish Government policy as it relates to maternity care.

2. Equally Well Implementation Plan 2008-

3. The term high risk cannot be prescriptive and will depend on individual circumstances. NICE have highlighted teenagers, women with addiction problems, women from BME communities, women experiencing domestic abuse, other groups would be women with learning disabilities or women involved in prostitution. Poverty is usually an underlying key feature within all of these groups and is in itself a risk factor for poorer outcomes.

4. NICE Socially Complex Pregnancies -

WHO maternal and infant mortality observatory

5. Tackling Child Poverty in Scotland- A Discussion Paper

6. Health assets are strengths within an individuals' possession. They embrace both internal and external strengths. Internal strengths include positive relationships with others, the motivation to control or change individual circumstances, and the presence of protective personal characteristics such as for example a resilient personality and/or a sense of optimism. External characteristics include social support networks, expectations of others, and physical and environmental elements. The antecedents of health assets are genes, values, beliefs, and life experiences. Health assets mobilise an individual to engage in risk assessment, decision making, and change. The consequences of health assets are positive health behaviours that can lead to control, self-efficacy and improved health outcomes. Health asset based approaches recognise that traditional approaches to health improvement generally concentrate on the problem or deficit smoking, obesity etc, rather than starting with what is working in a person's life and what people care about.

7. The World Health Organisation's definition of Health Literacy is 'the cognitive and social skills which determine the motivation and ability of individuals to gain access to, understand and use information in ways which promote and maintain good health'

8. Maternal and Early years Website -

9. , Equally Well Task Force -

10. Marmot review Reference -

11. NHS Scotland Health Care Quality Strategy

12. Framework for maternity services 2001

13. Record Delivery National Perinatal Epidemiology Unit -

14. Inequalities Sensitive Practice Initiative- Maternity user Survey; NICE Socially complex pregnancies

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