Maternity report with initial covid-19 feedback addendum

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Summary of report content

Healthwatch West Berkshire conducted a survey with 190 local women about their experiences of using maternity services. In this report there is additional findings about the use of these services during the COVID-19 pandemic collected via online meetings.

The report found that certain maternity services are not used by women in West Berkshire. This could be due to the focus on particular hospitals within the current system. 25% of women were dissatisfied with their maternity care, and 9% described the overall experience in their eyes as ‘traumatic’. This seems a high proportion who are unhappy, about which we should all be concerned and warrants further investigation.

During the pandemic, new mothers found it difficult to cope with the lack of family help due to lockdown. There was also a communication gap where they did not know what to do around important issues, including getting in touch with midwives, and organising baby weighing. The lack of health visitors operating normally, has impacted new mums. 

Recommendations are listed in teh report to improve maternity services. The report received a number of responses from service providers. 

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General details

Report title 
Maternity report with initial covid-19 feedback addendum
Local Healthwatch 
Healthwatch West Berkshire
Date of publication 
Tuesday, 6 October, 2020
Type of report 
Key themes 
Communication between staff and patients
Health promotion
Health protection
Holistic support
Information providing
Lifestyle and wellbeing
Quality of care
Service closure
Service delivery organisation and staffing
Staff levels
Healthwatch reference number 

Methodology and approach

Was the work undertaken at the request of another organisation? 
Primary research method used 
How was the information collected? 
If an Enter and View methodology was applied, was the visit announced or unannounced? 

Details of health and care services included in the report

Secondary care services 

Details of people who shared their views

Number of people who shared their views 
Age group 
Specific ethnicity if known 
Sexual orientation 
Not known
Does the information include public's views? 
Does the information include carer's, friend's or relative's views? 
Does the information include staff's views? 
Does the information include other people's views? 
What was the main sentiment of the people who shared their views? 

Outcomes and impact

Were recommendations made by local Healthwatch in the report? 
Does the information contain a response from a provider? 
Yes action has been taken or promised
Is there evidence of impact in the report? 
Is there evidence of impact external to the report? 
What type of impact was determined? 
Implied Impact

Network Impact
Relationships that exist locally, regionally, nationally have benefited from the work undertaken in the report
Implied Impact
Where it is implied that change may occur in the future as a result of Healthwatch work. This can be implied in a provider  response, press release or other source. Implied impact can become tangible impact once change has occurred.
Tangible Impact
There is evidence of change that can be directly attributed to Healthwatch work undertaken in the report.