Nurses or midwives caring for relatives and friends

As a professional you may be asked to provide care for a close friend or family member and whilst there may be no legal or regulatory reason why you may not do so, you should consider carefully the risks or benefits before entering into such an agreement.

If you are employed, you should seek advice and support from your employer, particularly in relation to vicarious liability. If you provide care whilst employed, it is important you follow local policy, refer appropriately, document care given and seek additional clinical and supervisory support when required.

If you consider that local policy conflicts with best available evidence, this should be highlighted to those responsible for policy development within your area of work.

You continue to remain accountable for any care given or omitted and must continue to practise within NMC the Code and Midwives rules and standards.

If acting in an independent capacity, you should seek professional indemnity insurance. However if this is not possible, you must inform your relative or friend that this may have a detrimental impact should they later seek redress. A midwife should also inform a supervisor of midwives of their plans.

This information was reviewed in September 2013.

Further information

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