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Maternity & Neonatal Health and Safety Collaborative

UCLPartners Patient Safety Collaborative is supporting maternity and neonatal teams in the region to work together to improve the outcomes and experience of babies and families.

As part of the National Maternity and Neonatal Safety Improvement Programme (MatNeoSIP), UCLPartners is supporting maternity and neonatal teams in the region to work together to improve the outcomes and experience of babies and families.

Background

This national collaborative, established by NHS England and NHS Improvement, is a five-year programme to support improvement in the quality and safety of maternity and neonatal units across England. The collaborative aims to:

  • Support maternal and neonatal care services to provide a safe, reliable and quality healthcare experience to all women, babies and families across maternity care settings in England.
  • Create the conditions for continuous improvement, a safety culture and a national maternal and neonatal learning system.
  • Contribute to the national ambition of reducing the rates of maternal and neonatal deaths, stillbirths, and brain injuries that occur during or soon after birth by 50% by 2025.

Teams across the country work on quality improvement projects to meet these aims.

The programme looks to improve processes, systems, culture and service user involvement to impact outcomes on three clinical areas linked to stillbirths and neonatal harm:

  1. Improve the proportion of smoke free pregnancies.
  2. Optimise the health and condition of the very preterm infant (<27 weeks gestation).
  3. Improve the early recognition and management of deterioration during labour and early post-partum period (the time immediately following childbirth).

Our work

We are supporting teams in a number of ways.

Improvement support

  • Providing quality improvement advice and support for teams and projects. This includes access to training on Quality Improvement, Measurement for Improvement, and Human Factors
  • Conducting safety culture surveys, and running debriefing sessions with staff, to support improvements in team culture
  • Facilitating Safety Improvement Networks – quarterly sessions for teams to learn from each other, create long-term solutions to current challenges and facilitate conversations with key stakeholders (such as Local Maternity Systems)

Pan-London In-Utero Transfer

In-utero transfers (i.e. before the baby is delivered) are required when the woman or baby will require expertise and specialist support not available at the local maternity unit. The standard set by NNAP (National Neo-Natal Audit Programme) is for 85% of babies born at less than 27 weeks to be delivered in a maternity service at the same site as a Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) – the most recent data showed this to be 74.3%. We have therefore been working with the London Maternity Clinical Network, Neonatal Operational Delivery Network, Emergency Bed Service (EBS) at the London Ambulance Service (LAS) and trusts across London to support implementation of the Pan-London In-Utero Transfer guidelines by:

  • Ensure timely in utero transfers for those pregnant mothers most at risk
  • Reduce the number of unnecessary transfers
  • Improve the patient experience of transfer
  • Decrease the time spent arranging transfer by clinicians

We will continue to support this work through hosting system-wide learning events.

For further information: http://www.londonneonatalnetwork.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2019/10/IN-UTERO-LEAFLET-Final-v1-1.pdf

Related work

We have also trained, and continue to support, several teams to implement the BSOTS maternity triage system.

We continue to provide ongoing advice to teams who were part of the PreCePT programme to reduce the risk of brain injury in pre-term babies.

Helpful resources

A number of change packages have been developed to support our work. These include:

Contact details:

Paulina E. Sporek de Lacerda, Maternity Improvement Advisor. Email: paulina.sporek@uclpartners.com

Marina Fernando, Clinical Lead. Email: marina.fernando@uclpartners.com