Developing care that meets women’s complex needs

"I went to a Parentcraft class while I was pregnant and I felt a real stigma about being a single pregnant woman"

Understanding and responding to women’s experiences of multiple disadvantage holds the key to tackling health and social inequalities now and across future generations.

We define multiple disadvantage as the co-occurrence of three or more complex health or social factors. At the moment most services don’t record or address women’s multiple needs holistically. Individual complex health and social factors are addressed through a siloed approach that can lead to women falling through the gaps between services, and support packages that are set to fail from the start.

We want better understanding of the impact of multiple disadvantage on the lives of pregnant women and new mothers, and changes to the systems they navigate. This will equip policy-makers and practitioners to provide individualised, multi-agency support that makes a real difference.

“I noticed the healthcare staff always spoke to the officers first even though I’d be sitting there. It’s like they discarded me as a human being." 

Read our research Making Better Births a reality for women with multiple disadvantages

Birth Companions is registered in England and Wales under charity number 1120934 at Dalton House, 60 Windsor Avenue, London SW19 2RR. We use cookies to improve your experience using this website.
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