A report on maternity wards in Northern Ireland by the Regulation and Quality Improvement Authority (RQIA) has made 20 recommendations to ensure the quality of care for women in labour. Health Minister Michael McGimpsey said the report would inform an impending review of maternity services.
NCT, the UK’s largest parenting charity, believes improved woman-centred maternity care is imperative. The charity welcomes the report and its findings, as quality maternity service provision can only enhance the well-being of mothers, fathers, babies and the wider family.
Anne Fox, Head of Campaigns and Public Policy, NCT, said: “NCT welcomes the recommendations and seconds the proposal that an overall strategy for the future development of maternity services in Northern Ireland should be adopted by the Department of Health, Social Services and Public Safety. We would also welcome the creation of consultant midwifery posts to help improve midwife-led local services, which is the ideal for most women with a low risk of medical complications.
“Any review of maternity services should draw upon the experiences of those who use them as well as the staff who provide them, and we support the inclusion of the views of parents in the review. We call on the Minister and his department to put mothers and fathers at the heart of developing a strategy for the future, and to support Trusts and local services to constantly improve and strive to provide the first class maternity services they deserve.”