Co-Sleeping and Bed Sharing in Australian Maternity Units: An Electronic Survey of Midwifery Clinicians' Knowledge, Practice, and Education

    loading  Checking for direct PDF access through Ovid



There is little published research regarding co-sleeping and bed sharing in maternity units. As primary carers of mothers and infants, midwives' knowledge and practice may influence cosleeping and bed sharing.


To assess clinical midwives' knowledge and practice surrounding co-sleeping and bed sharing in maternity units in the initial postpartum period.


A nationwide electronic survey assessed clinical knowledge and self-reported clinical practice and personal experiences of co-sleeping and bed sharing.


Eighty-six registered midwives from 48 hospitals responded to the survey. The majority responded with best practice to hypothetical scenarios. Mother-infant co-sleeping/bed sharing in maternity units was observed by 64% of midwives. All midwives reported providing some education to parents and most (80%) had received education on co-sleeping/bed sharing.


Co-sleeping and bed sharing are relatively common in postnatal maternity units. Clinical practice documents should be consistent with the UNICEF guidelines, and midwives should be supported to implement best practice.

Related Topics

    loading  Loading Related Articles