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Wednesday 26th June 2019

Pregnant women 'failed' by the NHS

3rd December 2010

Women who give birth in NHS hospitals are still being failed by the health service during labour and birth.


A Care Quality Commission report found that as many as one in five are left alone during birth and many women were sent home with their newborn baby without support or advice on feeding.

The survey of 25,000 women who gave birth in February found there had been some improvements in the last three years but in many areas care has not improved or has actually worsened.

The CQC report found that care during pregnancy has improved, with more women seeing a midwife in the first nine weeks, however fewer are being offered NHS ante natal classes.

CQC chief executive Cynthia Bower said: “With more women going direct to a midwife and more women having their booking appointment before they were nine weeks pregnant, it is clear that many trusts have taken on board national guidance and women are benefiting.

“This reported improvement in ante natal care is encouraging, but sadly it is not mirrored in the care provided during labour and birth.”

The Royal College of Midwives has called for 3,000 more midwives in order to cope with the birth rate which has been rising for the last few years.

The Department of Health said that all mothers should expect consistently excellent maternity services.

A spokesman added: “We welcome these results which reflect the dedicated efforts of NHS staff and will help trusts, midwives and doctors identify where improvements can be made.”


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Thursday 9th December 2010 @ 9:04

When I gave birth 12 years ago in my local NHS hospital, I was lucky to get the last delivery room available, spent most of a long labour on my own and ended up having an emergency caesarean. Not a good start to life as a parent and it doesn't sound as if much has changed in the meantime, disappointingly. We must be able to do better than this.

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