Released on: 11 January 2023

Responding to the CQC’s 2022 survey on women’s experiences of maternity care in England, NCT’s Chief Executive, Angela McConville, said:

“Maternity services in England are categorically falling short of women’s expectations. A woman who gives birth today may have a worse experience of NHS maternity services than if she gave birth five years ago. Time usually leads to progress, but we’re seeing the opposite.  

“Today, women are less likely to report getting the help they need during labour, birth and antenatally, to get information to make informed decisions about their care and to feel that any concerns about their care are taken seriously.  

“This is not all the impact of the Covid pandemic but is directly associated with long-term under-investment in the staffing of maternity services.  

“It is a testament to the many hard-working individuals in the NHS that most women were positive about their interactions with staff, but urgent action is needed to support staff to deliver high-quality, safe and personalised maternity care for every woman. 

“Lockdown-era postnatal policies must end now. It is unacceptable that less than half of women say that their partner or someone close to them was able to stay with them as much as they’d like after giving birth. Trusts must immediately enable partners’ presence at in-hospital postnatal care so that mothers are never left without food and water, emotional support, access to a bathroom and help to lift and feed their baby.” 

You can read the full report, here

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