Maternity Services Review

Gill Harris
Maternity Services Review
10 April 2015

Gill Harris, Chief Nurse at The Pennine Acute Hospitals NHS Trust, said:

"Childbirth is a life changing event for any women and their family. Obstetric care is considered high risk, particularly for some women, and by its nature unpredictable. However, as midwives, doctors and healthcare professionals it is our job to ensure we minimise the chance of avoidable harm to provide the safest care for women and their babies and an experience that meets their expectations.

"For this reason, we believe that it was right and responsible for the Trust to commission an external review last year, in addition to our own internal reviews, to look at the details and circumstances surrounding a small number of maternity cases at our hospitals, to leave no stone unturned and to learn any lessons as well as ensure any mistakes are not repeated. We did not wait for the external review to make improvements to our care as we aim to be an organisation that continually learns and improves.

“We are always keen to learn from others to improve the care our staff provides and so we are also working with another large hospital trust outside of Greater Manchester to share learning across our two organisations. We know we can learn from other hospitals as we develop our services and equally other Trusts can learn from us.

“Where the Trust has made mistakes and the standards of care have fallen short of what both our staff and patients expect, we are deeply sorry and are committed to learning and improving all aspects of care we provide. We will work closely with individual families concerned to ensure we learn from their experiences and are also working closely and collaboratively with our local commissioners and partners in acting on the outcomes of both our internal and external reviews.  We are committed to being open and transparent to patients, the public and with our staff. We are committed to using this feedback to help us achieve the highest standards of maternity care. 

"We deliver around 10,000 babies each year at our maternity units at The Royal Oldham Hospital and North Manchester General Hospital and I would like to reassure the public that our maternity services at our hospitals are safe.

"If any expectant mother has a concern then they should contact and speak in confidence with their designated midwife.”