NHS England has published Implementing Better Births: continuity of carer. This document provides practical guidance to local maternity systems on how to improve their services so that women experience continuity in the clinicians providing their maternity care.
“Evidence has also shown that continuity of carer reduces risks and will make a significant contribution to reducing rates of stillbirth, neonatal death and
brain injury during birth by 50% by 2030.” Professor Lesley Regan, MD DSc, President of the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists
The Professional Record Standards Body is seeking views from women who use maternity services, parents, health and care professionals and industry representatives on draft standards specifying which clinical information should be recorded and shared in maternity records. The final standard will help people involved in women’s maternity care, and women themselves, to share information quickly and easily.
For the first time these statistics from NHS Digital will combine reporting from two data sources for maternity information – Hospital Episode Statistics (HES) and Maternity Services Data Set (MSDS) – to give a fuller picture of NHS maternity activity for deliveries in 2016/17. This publication was previously named Hospital Maternity Activity.
• There were 636,401 deliveries in NHS hospitals during 2016-17, a decrease of 1.8 per cent from 2015-16.
• The proportion of deliveries with a spontaneous onset of labour has decreased from 68.7 per cent in 2006-07 to 55.1 per cent in 2016-17.
• The proportion of deliveries where labour was induced has increased from 20.3 per cent in 2006-07 to 29.4 per cent in 2016-17.
• In 2016-17, 355,850 deliveries were recorded within the MSDS by 111 maternity service providers.
• 80.0 per cent of women with babies born at 37 weeks gestation or more had skin-to-skin contact within one hour of the birth.
• 11.6 per cent of women with a recorded smoking status at their booking appointment were smokers.
NHS England has published Manual for prescribed specialised services 2017/18. This manual is the detailed technical document that describes which elements of specialised services are commissioned by NHS England and which by Clinical Commissioning Groups.
Specialist maternity care for women diagnosed with abnormally invasive placenta includes services provided by Specialist Maternal Care Centres including outreach when delivered as part of a provider network.
This is a report on NHS-funded maternity services in England for May 2017, using data submitted to the Maternity Services Data Set (MSDS). The MSDS has been developed to help achieve better outcomes of care for mothers, babies and children.
The MSDS is a patient-level ‘secondary uses’ data set that re-uses clinical and operational data for purposes other than direct patient care, such as commissioning and clinical audit. It captures key information at each stage of the maternity service care pathway in NHS-funded maternity services, such as those provided by GP practices and hospitals. The data collected include mother’s demographics, booking appointments, admissions and re-admissions, screening tests, labour and delivery along with baby’s demographics, diagnoses and screening tests.
Of the births that had a recorded delivery method, 57 per cent were spontaneous vaginal births, 11 per cent had instrumental assistance, 13 per cent were elective caesarean sections and 15 per cent were emergency caesarean sections. The proportion of births by emergency caesarean was highest in the London Commissioning Region (17 per cent) and lowest in the Midlands and East of England Commissioning Region (14 per cent).
The Institute of Fiscal Studies has published “Under pressure? NHS maternity services in England”. This briefing note discusses the causes and consequences of short-run and long-run pressures on NHS maternity services in England. It finds the number of maternity cases has stabilised since 2010 but the case mix has changed.
The changing case mix explains all of the rise in the number of C-sections in England between 2006 and 2014. The number of C-sections performed by NHS hospitals in England each year increased by 23,000 between 2006 and 2014. We estimate that all of this growth can be explained by the changing case mix of mothers giving birth. There is no evidence of a change in medical practice leading to more C-sections.
Read the briefing note here Download the full document here
The Chief Executive of NHS England has announced four new Mother and Baby Units which will allow women to stay with their babies while receiving the specialist care they need. These new units will provide in-patient support for women and their babies with the most complex and severe needs who require hospital care, who are experiencing severe mental health crisis including very serious conditions like post-partum psychosis
“Having a baby should be one of happiest, most life-changing experiences and every mum should have the opportunity to bond with her baby, while receiving the care she needs and remaining as close to her families as possible”