The Care Quality Commission has today published survey results outlining the experiences of 17,600 women who gave birth in February last year, as well as the quality of antenatal and postnatal support they received.
Professor Lesley Regan, President of the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists, said:
“While the NHS remains a safe place for women to give birth, there are clear improvements that can be made to ensure the best possible maternity care.
“It is heartening to see that the majority of women (88%) felt they were ‘always’ spoken to in a way they could understand during labour and birth, and a high number ‘definitely’ felt they had confidence and trust in the staff caring for them (82%).
“However, there were fewer improvements compared to the previous year, which is disappointing.
“Women’s experiences of postnatal care continue to remain less positive than all other aspects of their maternity journey, with information sharing and communication being the key areas where improvements are needed.
“It is also of concern that fewer women said they were ‘definitely’ given enough information about their own physical recovery after the birth (57% in 2017 down to 53% in 2018).
“And importantly, 15% of women are still not being offered choices about aspects of their care.
“As part of the NHS Long Term Plan, the Government has announced a commitment to ensuring continuity of carer and choice, as well as more specialist maternal mental health and postnatal physiotherapy support for women.
“We are calling for a national women’s health strategy to significantly improve health outcomes across three key stages in a woman’s life, including investment to improve postnatal care and support for all women.”
For media enquiries please contact the RCOG press office on +44 (0)20 7045 6773 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
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About the Royal College of Obstetrics & Gynaecology
The Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists is a medical charity that champions the provision of high quality women’s healthcare in the UK and beyond. It is dedicated to encouraging the study and advancing the science and practice of obstetrics and gynaecology. It does this through postgraduate medical education and training and the publication of clinical guidelines and reports on aspects of the specialty and service provision.