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Survey shows trust’s significant progress in maternity services

Posted: 1 February 2018
Jodi-Ann Gayle, Communications Officer

Picture of the women's services logoFeedback from new mothers who used West Hertfordshire Hospitals’ maternity service early last year has been published, showing significant improvement in the care provided.

Chief nurse Tracey Carter said: “Having a baby is always a very special occasion for parents and their loved ones and we want to make sure that they have the best experience possible while in our hospitals. We have been working extremely hard to improve how we care for new mothers, ensuring they are provided with the highest and safest quality of care, and I am pleased that this is reflected in the survey.”

The survey, organised nationally by the Care Quality Commission, was sent to 312 women who gave birth at West Hertfordshire Hospitals NHS Trust. Responses were received from 124 women.

The new mothers were asked to rate their overall experience of the care they received, grading the questions from zero to 10, with zero being the worst and 10 the best.

In the area of providing information and explaining things to new mothers, we made huge improvements as this was rated 7.9 compared to 6.9 in 2015. We have made changes to allowing partners or someone close to stay with mothers and this is reflected in the results as we scored 7.9 in comparison to the 5.1 we received in 2015. This also highlights that we have taken into consideration that new mothers would like to have their loved ones around to share this important time with them.

We received a score of 8.8 for treating new mothers with kindness and understanding and an exceptional score of 10 for our midwives asking new mothers how they were feeling emotionally.

Improvements were also shown in the area of directing new mothers to support they could need to deal with emotional changes they might experience after birth, where we received a score of 8.5.

Tracey said: “Our scores demonstrate the exceptional progress we’ve made in the way we care for new mothers and I am very proud of the staff for all their hard work and for continuously working towards transforming our maternity service. There is always room for improvement and we will continue to strive for the best.”

In the area of offering advice to new mothers about contraception, our 2015 score decreased from 10 to 9.1 in 2017.

Tracey said: “We recognise that more needs to be done in this area so we are currently training all staff. The interim head of midwifery Tracey Payne is working with her team to review information provided for women and we are exploring the option for key staff to attend enhanced training.”


For more information about our hospitals, visit www.westhertshospitals.nhs.uk. You can also join our near 5,324 followers on Twitter (twitter.com/westhertsNHS) or find us on Facebook (facebook.com/westhertsNHS).

  1. For more information, please contact Name, title in the Trust’s communications department on telephone: 01923 436 281 or email: info@whht.nhs.uk. Out of hours, please call 07900 228 031.
  2. West Hertfordshire Hospitals NHS Trust is a large acute trust serving people from across Hertfordshire, north London and further afield. It operates from three sites at Watford, St Albans and Hemel Hempstead hospitals and sees about 600,000 patients a year. We are one of the largest employers locally, with around 4,500 staff and volunteers.