St Austell maternity services 'require improvement' according to inspectors

The Care Quality Commission published a report Credit: PA images

The maternity services at Penrice Birthing Unit in St Austell Hospital require improvement according to a new report.

Inspectors from the Care Quality Commission said the service needs to further risk assess the level of emergency equipment available at the centre.

Cath Campbell, CQC deputy director of operations in the south, said: “Access to adult resuscitation equipment must improve, as well as ensuring all staff practice the trust’s baby abduction policy.

“Also, while staff at Penrice Birthing Unit completed people’s medicines records accurately, they didn’t always manage and store medicines safely.

The Royal Cornwall Hospital at Treliske

“We will continue to monitor the services, so the trust can build on where it’s providing good care, and make improvements where they’re needed.”

However the inspectors also noted the culture between community and hospital-based midwifery staff was improving, notes were comprehensive and work is underway to restart the peer-support breastfeeding service that was available pre-pandemic.

Inspectors also looked at services at Royal Cornwall Hospital in Treliske and Helston Birth Centre, both received a ‘good’ rating.

At the Royal Cornwall Hospital they noted the maternity building was ageing, and the environment was becoming too small for the number of babies born there.

While at Helston the inspection said staff need to ensure daily equipment checks are completed and accurate.

Sally Brittain, Director of Midwifery at Royal Cornwall Hospitals NHS Trust, said: “We thank the CQC for their comprehensive report and will ensure we use their findings as we work in collaboration with the Maternity Voices Partnership to make further improvements to our services.

“We have already revised our mandatory training programme, to address the feedback from the CQC”.