SMFM Special Statement: A maternal transport briefing form and checklist
When performing a maternal transport between two facilities, numerous pieces of information must be
communicated between physicians, nurses, and transport personnel, including the health status of 2
patients (mother and fetus), availability of bed space and personnel in 2 units at the receiving facility
(labor and delivery unit and neonatal intensive care unit), arrangements for transportation, and inpatient
and outpatient records. The amount and complexity of information creates a risk of medical error due to
communication lapses. A cognitive aid such as a standardized form can help the team prepare for a
transfer and provide a consistent framework for a handoff briefing among healthcare professionals.
SMFM presents a sample briefing form to ensure that key elements are communicated for every
maternal transport. Practical suggestions are given to help facilities customize the form and implement it
on their units.