Praise for maternity services at Queen’s Hospital

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A REPORT published last week has shown that maternity services at Queen’s Hospital are some of the best in the country.

The Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists (RCOG) released their annual census on Friday, 20 September. The census details how many staff care for women in labour at NHS Trusts throughout the UK.

The report has shown that Barking, Havering and Redbridge University Hospitals Trust (BHRUT) has one of the busiest maternity departments in the country, with around 9000 babies born there in 2012. With 321 midwives and 22 obstetrics and gynaecology consultants in post, the trust is also in the top 10 per cent of trusts in the country for numbers of maternity staff.

The high number of staff is one of a range of initiatives designed to improve care at the hospital – and means all women have one-to-one care throughout their labour.

One statistic demonstrated that women giving birth at Queen’s can expect consultants to be present on the labour ward for at least 96 hours a week – compared to the 59 hour national average.

Further, feedback from patients has shown that 95 per cent of women who have used maternity services at Queen’s said they would recommend it to family and friends.

Director of Midwifery Wendy Matthews said: “We have invested time and money in hugely improving our maternity services so that local women can expect the very best standards of care.

“Part of that was boosting the level of consultant cover on the labour ward. We have dedicated cover on our labour ward for 96 hours a week from senior and experienced consultants – with on-call arrangements at all other times.

“This ensures that women are being closely monitored and receiving the best possible treatment.

“While this figure puts us among the top 10 per cent of trusts in the country, we are still working to improve the levels of consultant cover until we can offer 168 hours cover, and have plans in place.”

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