'Three miscarriage rule' set to be scrapped after campaign by Sheffield MP

New draft guidelines issued last night by the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists (RCOG), and open for consultation, should mean people can get support after their first miscarriage, rather than having to wait until they have had three consecutive miscarriages before receiving any follow up support.

By Ellen Beardmore
Wednesday, 20th October 2021, 1:18 pm
Updated Wednesday, 20th October 2021, 2:07 pm

Draft guidelines were issued this week by the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists, and open for consultation, should change the so-called ‘three miscarriage rule.’

The news follows a campaign by Tommy’s, whose Lancet Report into miscarriage published earlier this year has formed the basis of the new guidelines, and Sheffield Hallam MP Olivia Blake, who herself suffered a miscarriage last year and wasn’t able to receive any support.

In June Labour MP Olivia Blake secured a debate on the Lancet report recommendations. The Government committed to including two of the three Lancet Report recommendations into their Women’s Health Strategy, including a record of national miscarriage data and 24/7 care and support for those who have experienced miscarriage, including follow-up mental health support.

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Myleene Klass and Sheffield Hallam MP Olivia Blake appeared in a TV documentary as part of Baby Loss Awareness Week.

On the recommendation that the three miscarriage rule be scrapped Minister, Nadine Dorries, said she hoped the new RCOG guidelines would be aligned to the Lancet series recommendations but that she was unable to decide what the guidelines or the recommendations are.

Under the new draft guidelines, which if implemented would represent the biggest reform to miscarriage care for 50 years, the RCOG want all NHS trusts to adopt the policy of graded care, where after the first miscarriage you are provided information, the second you are offered an appointment at a specialist clinic to help identify the cause, and after the third you are eligible for major investigation and care, such as blood tests.

Ms Blake said: “This is a huge step and an incredible win for campaigners and individuals who have been speaking up about this injustice for years.

“It has been nearly a year since I first spoke publicly about my own experience. The number of people from Sheffield and across the country who have contacted me since that day and shared their horrific experiences of being turned away from support because they hadn’t “had enough miscarriages” has only driven me to further push for change.”