£1m investment as Trust recruits 40 new maternity healthcare support staff
The Pennine Acute Hospitals NHS Trust has successfully recruited 40 additional new maternity healthcare support workers following an investment of over £1m in a drive to improve the individual experience of women and babies born in the Trust’s two maternity departments at North Manchester General Hospital and The Royal Oldham Hospital.
The decision to make the investment, which amounts to over £1m, was made following a recent review of staffing as part of the Trust’s maternity improvement plan.
The Trust Board agreed to invest in additional staff in maternity after it was found that an increased amount of direct clinical care and support was needed for women and their families, along with a need to support midwives to be able to deliver the highest high quality care.
Cathy Trinick, divisional director of midwifery at The Pennine Acute Hospitals NHS Trust said:
“This is a very exciting time for the midwifery team. The extra additional support staff will enable the midwives to focus on giving individual specialist support and care to women and babies, safely in the knowledge that the routine fundamental care and processes surrounding leaving hospital and transferring back to community care is being undertaken by the health care support workers, and delays in going home are reduced to a minimum.”
The recruitment drive has already started and some staff are now in place. Fourteen new band two and four new band three support workers have started work within maternity services at North Manchester General Hospital.
These workers are covering the post natal and ante natal wards, ante natal clinic, maternity assessment unit and labour ward.
The new band three senior maternity support workers will work as a new discharge team for mothers and babies which will ensure that they are given an estimated date and time of discharge from the hospital when they are admitted.
Debbie Charles, band three maternity support worker at The Pennine Acute Hospitals NHS Trust said:
“Our job is to improve the process of women going home from the post natal ward and ensure that new mothers and their babies have a smooth transfer back into the community.
“We will prepare their discharge records and give advice and support to women and their new families including education and advice on baby care, ranging from baby bathing and baby feeding , through to safe sleeping and advice on appropriate self care to aid recovery from birth for new mothers too.
“We are aiming that all women who are intending to go home be discharged from hospital and their care be transferred back to the care of the community midwives be completed by 2.00pm every day. With this in mind the health care support workers are helping to ensure that the midwives have actioned any referrals to other services that some women and babies might need, and that the medical records and electronic databases are updated as soon as possible to ensure good communication and high quality care.”
Belinda Jackson, inpatient matron maternity at The Pennine Acute Hospitals NHS Trust said:
“The new maternity support workers will undertake all the planned discharges to improve the woman’s experience and reduce delays in getting home. This will not only be a more efficient service relieving pressure for midwives and allowing them to concentrate on delivering high quality clinical care, but is focused on the needs of women and their families, who often want to get home as quickly as possible with their new baby.”
Pictured left to right: Julie Graham, healthcare assistant; Debbie Charles, healthcare assistant; postnatal ward manager Victoria Green, Christine Butterfield, healthcare assistant and new mum Chloe Ng with baby Lucas