Maternity services in north Cumbria praised by new mothers

ITV Border Reporter Kate Walby has been to the maternity ward at the Cumberland Infirmary to meet some of the patients and staff

Many women across north Cumbria have praised the maternity services for their positive experience.  In the latest survey by the Care Quality Commission (CQC) 146 women in Carlisle, Penrith, and Whitehaven were asked about the care they received at different stages of their pregnancy.

Jennifer Webster, who's 25-weeks pregnant with her second child is being treated at the Cumberland Infirmary, where she also gave birth to her first child.

She said: "I was really impressed, it was a little bit of a shaky afterbirth, I had a hemorrhage.

"Everyone at Carlisle was fantastic and really looked after me, and I felt completely in safe hands.

"I've had lots of midwife appointments out in the community.

"Everyone's lovely, really friendly!"

146 women in Carlisle, Penrith, and Whitehaven were asked about the care they received at different stages of their pregnancy. Credit: ITV Border

Women who gave birth last year in the area were asked a series of questions about their experience as part of the CQC's National Maternity Survey.For each question the new mothers were asked to give a score out of ten, the trust scored an average of 8.9 out of 10 when it came to labour and birth:

  • Asking women about their mental health - 10/10

  • Staff giving women advice on risks of induced labour - 8.5/10

  • Giving women the opportunity to ask questions - 7.4/10

  • Receiving help from staff after birth - 8.4/10

  • Kindness and understanding - 9/10

Rachel Fulton, Matron for maternity services at the North Cumbria NHS Trust said: "We're thrilled with the results of this survey because this is the women speaking and that's what we should be listening to - the voices of the women.

"We've come out better in nine areas than other trusts in the country, which is fantastic news and we're really proud of that.

"I think the really positive area is with regards to maternal mental health, because as we all know, mental health is something that is far more recognised in society now and particularly amongst pregnant women in the antenatal and postnatal period.

Following an inspection by the CQC last year, the Trust's maternity services were rated good. Credit: ITV Border

Amanda Kennett, associated director of midwifery at North Cumbria Integrated Care (NCIC), said: "We continue to improve year on year and to see patients giving such positive feedback is fantastic."We are really pleased with the results of the survey."I would like to thank our teams who work really hard to make sure that our patients feel safe, supported and well looked after before, during and after labour."Following a Care Quality Commission inspection last year, our maternity services were rated good."While we are pleased with the results, we are not complacent and will be examining the results further to see where we can improve for the future."  

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