The labour ward is a high pressure environment where a positive workplace culture is paramount.
In maternity care intra- or interprofessional communication have been identified as critical contributory factors to negative outcomes in several official investigations/reports:
- Be kind, civil and respectful
- Use first names only to break down barriers
- Foster a culture of openness that encourages asking for help
- Treat all members of the team as equally important and valued
- Be helpful to each other, no task should be beneath anyone
- Establish clear escalation policies
- Adopt structured communication tools such as SBAR
The labour ward presents particular challenges. It can be useful to reflect on your experiences on labour ward to try to determine which factors might be negatively influencing your behaviour in this setting. Below are some of these challenges and targeted ways you might address them.
For those looking to affect departmental change we recommend exploring Module 4 "I am responsible for a department that has a problem with bullying or undermining".