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Graded Care Profile 2 Antenatal (GCP2A)

About the tool

An evidence-informed assessment tool to support expectant and new parents

The antenatal period and early years of a child’s life can have a profound impact on their future physical and emotional safety and wellbeing. It’s important that parents are given support to provide the best care for their developing baby and newborn infant1.

Graded Care Profile 2 Antenatal (GCP2A) helps a range of professionals working with expectant parents to identify areas of strength and areas where they may benefit from support.

How it works

The tool is split into three sections. Each section uses a graded scale of 1 to 5 where 1 indicates no concerns and 5 indicates high concerns.

Sections one and two focus on the antenatal period, looking at the quality of consideration given to the developing baby. Section three is delivered during the postnatal period to review the quality of care in the early days of life.

The tool is based on GCP2 and includes areas of known risks that are linked to safeguarding concerns perinatally and in babies. It will help professionals build a picture to identify where concerns might emerge in relation to the impact on the developing baby. It can also be used as an indicator for potential safeguarding issues after birth.

Graded Care Profile 2 Antenatal has been piloted and tested for validity and is currently in Phase two of testing for inter-rater reliability.


Gerhardt, S. (2004) Why love matters: how affection shapes a baby's brain. New York: Routledge.

Ready to find out more?

We are at Phase two of testing GCP2A so are not currently scaling up the tool wider than the testing group.

If you have any questions about the Graded Care Profile 2 Antenatal, please email

Background and evidence

Background and evidence

Graded Care Profile 2 Antenatal (GCP2A) builds on the GCP2 tool and was developed in response to requests from sites delivering GCP2 and Family Nurse Partnership (FNP) to develop an antenatal version of the tool. Our insights analysis also highlighted there was a gap in provision for an evidence-based tool for pregnancy and early years.

We designed the tool in collaboration with Dr Srivastata, who created the original GCP tool, and practitioners. We then worked with eight NHS trusts and local authorities to help us understand how effective the tool was.

Phase one: initial testing

Phase one aimed to find out how practitioners, parents, service leads and experts viewed and experienced the antenatal tool - and how we could improve it.

We approached practitioners and families for their views on the tool’s language, accessibility and usability. We asked how it impacted practitioners’ decision-making, how families found the process of being assessed, and how behaviour had changed as a result of the assessment. The findings from the phase one evaluation were reviewed in September 2022 and it was agreed the project should move to phase two.

From the feedback we further consulted with practitioners who used the tool to further develop it. This version will now be used for the inter-rater reliability testing.

Phase two: inter-rater reliability

All tools should be exposed to inter-rater reliability testing. This tells us if the tool does what we want it to. It also demonstrates how close the results are when two individuals use the tool with the same family. Phase two started being delivered in January 2024 and is expected to conclude by November 2024.