Pregnancy Care Guidelines

Summary of recommendations and practice points

The page provides a list of recommendations and practice points

The recommendations in these Guidelines were developed by the Expert Advisory Committees (EACs) (see Appendix A and Appendix B) based on systematic reviews of the available evidence. Sets of systematic reviews were conducted in 2010–2011, 2012–2013, 2016–2017 and 2018-2019. Where sufficient evidence was available, this was graded according to the National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) Levels of Evidence and Grades for Recommendations for Developers of Guidelines (2009) for the 2010–2011 and 2012–2013 reviews and using Recommendations, Assessment, Development and Evaluation">GRADE methods for the 2016–2017 and 2018-2019 reviews. Recommendations were approved by the NHMRC in December 2011, June 2014, October 2017 and April 2019 respectively. Topics prioritised for future review are included in Appendix C and marked as under review in this summary of recommendations.

For all reviews, where evidence was limited or lacking, consensus-based recommendations (CBRs) were developed. Some recommendations and CBRs from other national guidelines have also been included, where these were based on systematic review of the evidence.

For areas beyond the scope of the systematic reviews, practice points (PPs) were developed by the EAC, the Working Group for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Women’s Antenatal Care and/or the Working Group for Migrant and Refugee Women’s Antenatal Care (see Appendices A and B).

The evidence-based recommendations and practice points focus on core practices in antenatal care, lifestyle considerations, and clinical and physical aspects of care. This care is provided following principles that endorse the protection, promotion and support necessary for effective antenatal care as outlined in Chapter 1. These include taking a holistic approach that is woman-centred, culturally sensitive and enables women to participate in informed decision-making at all stages of their care.

Definition of grades of recommendations (2010–11 and 2012–13 reviews)

Source: Adapted from NHMRC (2009) Levels of Evidence and Grades for Recommendations for Developers of Guidelines and NHMRC (2011) Procedures and Requirements for Meeting the 2011 NHMRC Standard for Clinical Practice Guidelines. 

Definition of grades of recommendations (2016–17 and 2018-19 reviews)

List of recommendations and practice points

Recommendations are numbered using Arabic numerals (eg 1, 2, 3), consensus-based recommendations using Roman numerals (eg I, II, III) and practice points using letters (eg A, B, C).

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