A report on maternity care in Hillingdon

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Summary of report content

As a result of Ealing Hospital Maternity Unit closing in July 2015, an estimate of 600 more women were going to deliver at Hillingdon Hospital. This report highlights the potential effect that the closure had on the quality of care received. It also aimed to investigate any possible inequalities that may have arisen owing to the re-configuration. Healthwatch Hillingdon spoke to 198 women from Hillingdon and 53 from Ealing, who had currently used the hospital’s maternity services and women who had given birth since the changes. Three focus groups to get feedback from women within various BME communities were conducted, along with semi-structured discussions and online surveys and talking to maternity staff as well as Children Centre Staff, families and spouses. HW congratulated the Hillingdon Hospital Maternity department on the results of these engagements, as the evidence clearly showed that the maternity department was providing an excellent service. From the supportive and empathetic care given to women and their families throughout their maternity pathway to their excellent skin- to- skin rates. HW felt that generally, the maternity department had effectively adjusted to the changes made by the ‘Shaping a Healthier Future’ reconfiguration. They managed the transition well and feedback showed the care of women had not been negatively impacted during this period. Women reported that they really valued the services and support provided to them and their families through children centres too, especially the sympathetic support and help them with breast feeding. Even though it was recognised that not all women have received excellent care, and some had not felt fully supported during the pregnancy, the evidence showed that the closure of Ealing‘s maternity unit had definitely impacted negatively upon their personal experience. Listening to women’s suggestions on what they would like to see change and done differently, HW identified 8 recommendations, to better and improve the experiences of women and their families. - To review how information is given, so in addition to receiving printed literature, women should be provided with more verbal information. - A review undertaken of interpreting services to support women who do not speak English, to meet Clinical Maternity Standards. - To review the continuity of care between women and their health professionals to meet the expectations of The National Maternity Review. - To review the referral process between the hospital and Borough of Hillingdon who provide smoking cessation service. - The hospital considers introducing a pager system in the antenatal department to allow women the choice of waiting elsewhere during their appointments. - To review of the referral pathway for Ealing residents to the Ealing perinatal mental health service; and for the Hillingdon CCG to review the perinatal mental health service in Hillingdon to see how future provision can be met. - Greater informed choice be given to women concerning where they can deliver their babies. - Hillingdon Clinical Commissioning Group work with The Shaping a Healthier Future team and Hillingdon Hospital to review the provision of antenatal and postnatal clinics in Ealing.

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General details

Report title 
A report on maternity care in Hillingdon
Local Healthwatch 
Healthwatch Hillingdon
Date of publication 
Monday, 3 April, 2017
Date evidence capture began 
Tuesday, 3 January, 2017
Date evidence capture finished 
Monday, 3 April, 2017
Type of report 
Report
Key themes 
Admission
Car parking access
Communication between staff and patients
Complaints procedure
Consent to care and treatment
Continuity of care
Interpreters
Patient records
Service closure
Service delivery organisation and staffing
Staff attitudes
Waiting time to be seen once arrived at appointment
Waiting times and lists for treatment
Healthwatch reference number 
Rep-1202

Methodology and approach

Was the work undertaken at the request of another organisation? 
No
Primary research method used 
Focus group
Survey
Unstructured Interview
User stories
How was the information collected? 
Engagement Event

Details of health and care services included in the report

Primary care services 
GP practice
Health visitor
Secondary care services 
Maternity
Community services 
Community health care services - independent midwives

Details about conditions and diseases

Conditions or diseases 
Fertility, pregnancy and childbirth
What type of pregnancy or maternity themes are included in the report 
Pregnant

Details of people who shared their views

Number of people who shared their views 
251
Age group 
All
Gender 
Female
Ethnicity 
All
Specific ethnicity if known 
All
Sexual orientation 
Not known
Does the information include public's views? 
Yes
Does the information include carer's, friend's or relative's views? 
No
Does the information include staff's views? 
Yes
Types of health and care professionals engaged 
Care / support workers
Doctors
Midwives
Does the information include other people's views? 
No
What was the main sentiment of the people who shared their views? 
Mixed

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.