Midwife holding baby - maternity care

Learnings and best practice for maternity highlighted in new report

Representatives from over 40 maternity centres, hospitals, Royal Colleges and more have gathered at a national workshop to share examples of quality improvement work to improve provision of induction in labour, with the workshop resulting in a report aiming to “bring together a host of proven changes that can improve services, care and experiences”.

There are five key themes identified in the report, around improving women’s experiences through the induction of labour (IOL) pathway and process; developing tools to support informed consent for IOL or expectant management; prioritising women within the IOL queue; reducing delays within the IOL process; and using technology to support the IOL pathway.

Best practices example highlighted in the document include development of a decision aid and information leaflet for women, co-design of facilities for IOL, development of a RAG rating system aiming to help prioritise women admitted to hospital when transferring to the labour ward, introduction of a flow and capacity coordinator, and the introduction of “safe gestational ranges” for induction.

Susie Crowe, president of the British Intrapartum Care Society – publishers of the report – has commented that the document “is a real example of the positive change that can come about when you get midwives, obstetricians, and service users in a room together with a shared vision. There is so much passion and drive in the system to co-produce, listen to women, and create services that promote safe, personalised, equitable care for all.”

She adds: “What we are increasingly learning however is that services are have more in common with each other than ways in which they differ, and there is a real opportunity to learn from excellence, collaborate, and form networks that create change.”

The report can be accessed in full here.

Earlier this year, we took a look at NHS England’s three-year neonatal and maternity roadmap, which puts the spotlight on three key themes: listening to and working with women and families with compassion; growing, retaining and supporting the workforce; and developing and sustaining a culture of safety, learning and support. Read more here.