From today, women across Hull and the East Riding will be asked to share their views on local maternity care.
The National Maternity Survey will ask women who have recently given birth about their personal experiences of antenatal care, childbirth and postnatal care.
The survey is being carried out by hospitals across the country and, locally, just over 400 women will receive a copy of the 2015 survey by post.
Karen Thirsk, Nurse Director for the Family & Women’s Health Group at Hull and East Yorkshire Hospitals NHS Trust, says the survey is vital in helping staff understand what women and their families want from their maternity care:
“More than 6,000 women each year give birth with the support of our local midwifery teams, and we know each one of those women will have a different experience and different expectations of us.
“We always welcome feedback from women who have used our services and their families, but the National Maternity Survey gives us the chance to delve a little deeper and allows us to collect the information in a much more structured way.
“The survey asks for women’s views on a whole range of things, from the initial booking-in process to their experiences during labour and delivery, and the advice and support they receive once they return home.”
Staff working within the Trust’s maternity services are keen to use the information collected to continue improving the care they provide and adapting it, where possible, to meet the specific needs of women and their babies. Previous examples of where they have responded to patient feedback include the establishment of a healthy lifestyle clinic in Bransholme following requests made of community midwives, and the option to spend time in individual rooms whilst on maternity wards for both ante- and post-natal care.
“If there are things that women would like us to do more or less of, if there are things we do well or need to make better, then we’d really like to know about them. Having a baby can be both an exciting and an anxious time, so we want to try and make the whole journey as smooth and as a special as possible.
“I’d strongly encourage anyone who receives a copy of the survey in the next couple of weeks to complete and return it, as only by hearing what people have to say and then acting on their comments can we improve care for future mums-to-be or for when they have their next babies.”
Taking part in the National Maternity Survey is voluntary. Responses will be used to better understand and improve the care provided to pregnant women and new mums across the area, and all individual answers will remain confidential.
The survey will run from Monday 27th April and will close on Friday 28th August 2015.