Close Close
Mother and Baby

‘Just Not Good Enough’: Maternity Care Issues Highlighted By Hospital Chief Inspector

A new report has identified both the negatives and positives in the way mums-to-be are cared for in the UK

It’s one of the most important times in a woman’s life – but maternity care in the UK is ‘just not good enough’ according to the chief inspector of hospitals.

Professor Sir Mike Richards has criticised the NHS after the Care Quality Commission’s 2013 report on maternity services.

It highlighted specific issues women face during pregnancy and labour, including being given inconsistent information by their medical team and having different midwives along the way.

Almost one in five mums-to-be felt their concerns weren’t taken seriously, while the number left alone when they were worried, especially during early labour, has increased since the last report in 2010.

There were also issues raised about cleanliness in hospitals and postnatal facilities being below par.

However, the report also emphasised the improvements since 2010. More women felt like they were spoken to by medical staff in a way they understood (bye bye, birth jargon), treated with kindness and understanding, and also that they were involved in their own care throughout pregnancy and labour.

Women also reported higher levels of trust and confidence in their team

Women also reported higher levels of trust and confidence in their team, felt able to move around more and find a comfortable labour position, and could also have their birth partner involved in their birth as much as they wanted. New mums being asked how they felt emotionally was also an area improved on.

‘We welcome evidence of improvements in women's experience of maternity care since 2010, but there are worrying findings, too,’ says Cathy Warwick from the Royal College of Midwives.

‘It is sad to see that in three years the NHS has not improved in terms of women seeing the same midwife during their care, which often means women have to repeat their histories over and over again.’

What was your maternity care experience? Let us know below.

Related content:


No comments have been made yet.

Chinese Gender predictor
Chinese Gender Predictor

Are you expecting a boy or a girl? Tell us the month you conceived and how old you are, and this clever little tool will predict the rest! 

Nappy rash is painful for parents as well as for your baby
Nappy rash is painful for parents as well as for your baby

Read Dr Pixie's guide to learn how to deal with nappy rash

The Magic Sleepsuit
The secret to a quiet night’s sleep – The Magic Sleepsuit

If you’re little one is struggling to settle now they’ve outgrown the swaddling stage, this could be the answer to your sleep-deprived prayers!

Celebrating parenting's small wins
Celebrating parenting's small wins

As mums, we're constantly told to enjoy every moment; in reality, parenting can sometimes be challenging. That's where small wins come in...

Subscribe button May
Subscribe to Mother&Baby

Be the best mum you can be and let Mother & Baby guide you along the way. Each issue is jam packed with REAL advice from mums just like you. Subscribe today & get a free welcome gift!

Ovulation Calculator
Ovulation calculator
Trying for a baby? Work out when you're most fertile to increase your chances of getting pregnant with our easy-to-use ovulation calculator.
Pregnant woman
Due Date Calculator

When is your baby due? If you’re having trouble remembering dates and counting up the days on your fingers and toes, don’t worry – use our due date calculator.

Get M&B in your inbox!

Sign up to Mother&Baby today and get news and advice about your body and your baby straight to your inbox every week. 

Lemonade Money
It’s time to make sure your loved ones are protected

Every parent knows the importance of planning ahead; from the new school shoes, to your little one’s education, you want to fill their future with hopes and dreams. Yet are you one of the 80% of adults here in the UK that has no life cover?