Fab CRH women's unit delivering a family centred approach following their moves

Colleagues, patients and relatives on our women’s unit are seeing improvements in the care their families receive - thanks to a huge effort to bring all the departments together at CRH.

Rather than being spread around the hospital, they’re now all together on wards 4, offering much better choices and facilities to patients and their families.

Previously, women’s maternity services, including the wards and the gynaecological unit were not all in one place.

There was very little natural light on the wards, bathroom facilities were poor with only two ensuite rooms in the induction suite, and the bay areas were restricted for space.

Because of the locations, we also needed two ward managers, which wasn’t the best use of resources. And when Debbie Williams retired, our remaining ward manager Janine Mellor found herself going back and forth.

Head of Midwifery, Gail Wright, told CHFT Weekly: “It was clear work needed to be done to improve the environment and ultimately the service for our patients, and this was reflected in the Friends and Family feedback (FFT). We knew we needed to change things.

“We weren’t fully meeting the standards we wanted to in terms of transitional care facilities that enabled both parents to stay in a side room together as a family, which we now offer.

“And each of the 17 rooms on our induction suite also have their own bathrooms, which is a massive improvement for patients and their families”.

The elective caesarean pathway has also improved. There is now a much smoother transition.

Gail added “We’re pleased to see our FFT feedback is getting better, and we’ve had some great comments on our Better Births Facebook page at CHFT – specifically set up so we could share pregnancy and birthing stories as well as support for families”.

Families are telling us its helpful that partners can now stay overnight and it’s really giving them better choices.

They love having a day room as it means they’re able to get away from their bed to eat meals. They can also socialise away from the ward environment, as well as interact with families in similar situations. 

Gail said “I want to say a personal huge thank you to all our ward 4 teams. The way you’ve all amalgamated together has really focussed us all on improving family care, and I’m thrilled with the way you’ve all embraced the changes”.

And Janine added “It hasn’t just been the ward 4 teams who have pulled together to make this all happen.

“We really couldn’t have done it without support from Val Rigg and Sophie Holroyd in service performance. Plus the porters were brilliant on the day of the moves and Alice Lingard from pharmacy has been a total star!”

What colleagues are saying:

“It’s now a light and airy space”

“It’s great working as part of a larger team. We can keep up different skills much easier”

“The day room and play areas are much better”

Ward manager Janine said “We now have a family centred approach, rather than a patient centred approach”.

“There is a real pride in the service we deliver and the structure of the wards is much improved”.

*Transitional care cots are for babies born early, but don’t require neo-natal or intensive care support.