NHS Careers > Explore by career > Wider healthcare team > Careers in the wider healthcare team > Clinical support staff > Maternity support worker

Maternity support worker

Sometimes known as maternity healthcare support workers, these staff work under the supervision of qualified midwives and assist in the care of mothers and babies.

Maternity support workers (MSWs) have a range of responsibilities which will vary, depending on the exact role. These will be done under supervision of a qualified midwife, and would usually include tasks such as:

  • taking blood samples for testing
  • making routine observations (such as temperature, pulse, blood pressure, and breathing)
  • maintaining accurate records and other administrative duties
  • maintaining stock levels of stationery and equipment
  • participating in parent education (this could be on a group or individual basis)
  • preparing equipment
  • clearing up after sessions

They work in a variety of settings, including:

  • in the community
  • acute post-natal wards
  • maternity theatre
  • delivery suite
  • midwifery led units

They need to be able to cope with emergency situations, as well as, more straightforward labour.

Entry requirements

MSWs will normally need a good general education, maybe with NVQ level 2 or equivalent qualifications.


MSWs need:

  • good verbal and written communication skills
  • pleasant attitude
  • an ability to work a varied shift pattern

MSWs may also need a driving licence.

Job vacancies

Most NHS employers advertise on the NHS Jobs website. Trusts may also advertise in the local press.

Further information

For further information, contact your local NHS trust. A list of trusts can be found on the NHS Choices website.