Qualification: NCFE CACHE Level 3 Diploma for the Early Years Educator
Unit: Unit 1.6: Understand the needs of the mother and baby during pre-conception, pregnancy and the first year of life
Learning outcome: Understand development from conception to end of gestation
Assessment criteria: Identify actions to take in response to outcomes of antenatal developmental checks
If a developmental anomaly is identified during antenatal screening, it is essential that health professionals discuss all of the available options with the expectant mother.
She should be given as much information as possible about her options to make an informed choice. Professionals should approach this conversation with sensitivity, compassion and empathy, respecting the mother’s decision regardless of what it may be.
She may be offered a further screening test called non-invasive prenatal testing (NIPT), which is a blood test. NIPT can give a more accurate result for the chance of the baby having certain conditions, including Down’s syndrome. The test is usually done at 10-13 weeks of pregnancy.
She may also be offered diagnostic tests that can check if the baby definitely has the condition screening tests have said they might have. The tests you may be offered include amniocentesis and chorionic villus sampling (CVS)
Amniocentesis and CVS are both invasive tests. This means they carry a small risk of causing a miscarriage. The midwife or doctor will discuss the benefits and risks of having an invasive test.
Additional non-invasive scans may also be offered.