Maternity care at Western Sussex Hospitals

MP praises safe maternity care

Tuesday April 15, 2014

An MP has seen first-hand the excellent care which has led a maternity department to be recognised as one of the safest in the country.

Tim Loughton MP visited Worthing Hospital to congratulate the staff who have earned national recognition for the standards of their care, and took the chance to meet mums, dads, and some very newly-arrived babies as well.

MP Tim Loughton visiting Worthing Hospital maternity unit
MP Tim Loughton visits Worthing Hospital maternity unit

Western Sussex Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, which runs Worthing Hospital and St Richard’s Hospital in Chichester, has just been awarded the prestigious ‘level three’ award for the Clinical Negligence Scheme for Trusts (CNST) – effectively a recognition that staff deliver a service for mums which is considered to pose the lowest possible risk.

Only 12 other Trusts in the country have achieved this status, which recognises that staff are consistently performing to a high and safe standard.

Level two, which the Trust gained last year, simply demonstrates that plans and policies are in place to ensure that women and babies get safe care. The Trust has risen to the top of the rankings in just three years.

Carole Garrick, Head of Midwifery, said: “Achieving level three is a superb achievement and it confirms the lengths our maternity staff go to in order to prioritise the safety of the women and babies they care for.

“We seek to ensure that safety is utterly embedded in the way our teams work and our challenge now is to maintain these high standards.

This is a testament to the dedication and skill of staff across the service

“I hope that everyone involved feels very proud of themselves and their colleagues, and I hope that local women are reassured that their safety is the overriding, number one priority of their maternity service.”

Tim Loughton, MP for East Worthing and Shoreham, said: “It is essential that local people have a maternity service they can rely on, and so it is excellent news that the teams in Worthing Hospital have gained this endorsement.

“I congratulate them on their achievement, and for doing their essential work so well.”

The CNST inspectors gave glowing feedback following the inspection on 20 March, and have cited the Trust’s teams as an example of great maternity practice to other organisations.

Across Worthing and St Richard’s hospitals, staff help mums to deliver approximately 5,500 babies a year.

Some of the key reasons for the award of the ‘level three’ status include the very low perinatal morbidity rate at the Trust, and the training programme which is given to clinicians working in other specialties.

Dr Tim Taylor, Chief of Service for Women and Children, said: “This achievement is a testament to the dedication and skill of staff across the service.

“They are committed to giving the best and safest possible environment for mothers giving birth, and do everything possible to ensure that they give their very best, 24 hours a day, every day.”

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