NNUH Maternity services rated as ‘Good’ by inspectors

montage image of our maternity teams with CQC Good logo

Maternity services at our hospital have been rated as ‘Good’ following an inspection by the Care Quality Commission (CQC).

During a maternity inspection at NNUH in November, the independent regulator found a department who had worked tirelessly to increase their midwifery establishment and one which had no midwifery vacancies. They found a team who worked well together for the benefit of people who access their services and their families. Inspectors said that staff felt respected, supported, and valued, managed safety well and engaged well with service users.

The CQC report, which is published today (22 February), said that our maternity services had improved since their last inspection and has been awarded a rating of ‘Good’. They found our maternity services to be ‘Good’ for both safety and well-led.

Inspectors highlighted two areas of ‘outstanding’ practice, including the launch of the Maternal Medicine Centre at NNUH which offers pre-pregnancy counselling and additional support for those with pre-existing medical conditions. They also highlighted the specialist scanning and multidisciplinary work to provide a regional centre of excellence for women with abnormally invasive placentas.

Stephanie Pease, Divisional Midwifery Director, said: “We are delighted that the CQC has recognised the improvements we have made, which is testament to the dedication and hard work of the whole team to deliver the best possible care to more than 5,000 service users who access care at the NNUH every year. We are particularly pleased to have over-recruited into midwifery roles to ensure safe staffing.”

“The inspectors highlighted many other areas of good practice within the report – for example, the Rainbow Clinic for previously bereaved families, the supportive senior midwifery leadership team, the staff engagement, a proactive learning culture and the positive experience of clinical supervision and overall satisfaction described by our medical trainees.

“We have very well-established links with the Norfolk and Norwich Maternity and Neonatal Voices Partnership and the local community to continue to make improvements to our services.”

Beth Gibson, Consultant Obstetrician and Chief of Service, said: “We’d like to thank the CQC for their thorough inspection and report, which will help us to continue to develop and improve. We are particularly pleased that our open culture has been recognised and our efforts to create one of two Maternal Medicine Centres to improve outcomes for women with pre-existing medical conditions and acute complications arising in pregnancy.”

Inspectors found:

  • The service had recently implemented a recruitment and retention strategy to help ensure there were enough staff to keep people safe.
  • Staff were trained, skilled and qualified to provide the right care and treatment.
  • The service managed safety incidents well and learned lessons from them.
  • People could access the service when they needed it and didn’t have to wait too long for treatment.
  • Staff were clear about their roles and accountabilities and leaders supported staff to develop their skills.

Inspectors also found:

  • Staff didn’t always check equipment to ensure it was safe and ready for use.
  • Staff didn’t always store medicines safely and they did not always record medication refrigeration temperature.

Since the inspection the Maternity team have reviewed its daily processes for checking equipment, medicines, and refrigeration temperatures. These new steps are being embedded into the daily activities within the clinical areas.

Mr Jo Nieto, Chief of Division for Women and Children’s Division, said: “We are very happy to have received this recognition from the CQC which demonstrates the improvements that have been carried out within the maternity department and encourages us to continue to develop and improve our service.”

CQC rates Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital maternity services as good – Care Quality Commission

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