NHS organisations in South Tyneside and Sunderland are seeking parents as well as parents to be to give their views on maternity care as part of two online-only events.
Big changes have taken place to maternity care since summer 2019, with the creation of a state-of-the-art Midwifery-Led Birthing Centre at South Tyneside District Hospital.
The centre has now welcomed over 256 babies.
This new service is in addition to the midwife-led care and consultant-led care located together at Sunderland Royal Hospital, as well as access to home births in both localities.
Now, parents will be given a further opportunity to help shape and improve these services,
in particular the creation of a maternity hub in South Tyneside, providing more maternity services in response to what mothers have said is important to them.
A Maternity Voices event which was due to take place at Hebburn Central in March this year unfortunately had to be cancelled due to the spread of the Covid-19 pandemic.
But two events will now take place online with the first held on Tuesday 17th November from 6pm to 7pm and the second on Thursday 19th November from 11am to 12 noon.
All of those interested can sign up to take part in either event, which will be held via Zoom.
It doesn’t matter if you have no previous experience of taking part in virtual groups.
A free familiarisation session is also being put on in advance of the online event on Thursday 12th November at 11am, which participants can sign up at NHS.firstname.lastname@example.org.
This session aims to help people feel more comfortable taking part in ‘virtual’ discussions.
Sheila Ford, Head of Midwifery at South Tyneside and Sunderland NHS Foundation Trust said: “We have been delighted with the response we’ve had from mams and dads since introducing our new model of maternity care, in particular those who have used the new birthing centre in South Tyneside.
“Despite the current issues we face with Covid-19, we’re still really keen to hear parents and service users’ views which is why we will be holding the rearranged event online.
“The positive feedback is really important to our brilliant maternity staff in both hospitals who’ve worked really hard to make the changes such a success.”
Jeanette Scott-Thomas, Executive Director of Nursing, Quality and Safety at South Tyneside Clinical Commissioning Group, said: “I would encourage anyone who has had recent experience of giving birth in South Tyneside or Sunderland to get involved in the latest Maternity Voices event.
“We’re really keen to hear parents’ views on our services so that we can make further improvements to the excellent services we offer.”
Rachel McDonald, Joint Commissioning Manager at Sunderland Clinical Commissioning Group, said: “The maternity service in place across South Tyneside and Sunderland offers a fantastic range of choices for local women.
“We’d really like to see mams, dads and carers across Sunderland who have recent experience of using these services to get involved in this important work.
“Our brilliant maternity staff already work hard to offer great care but we are always striving to do even better by listening to feedback from people who use our services.”
Register for the Maternity Voices event at email@example.com. (Please tell us which event you would like to attend.)
For anyone who wants to provide their views but not through the online event, there will be other ways to feed back.
For further information please email firstname.lastname@example.org.