Maternity services at Southmead Hospital are rated among highest in country for safety

Wednesday, 25 July 2012

Maternity services at Southmead Hospital have been awarded the highest level of recognition of clinical safety in the NHS.

The Maternity unit at Southmead has been awarded the NHS Clinical Negligence Scheme for Trusts (CNST) Level 3.

This is the highest and most challenging level of achievement granted by the NHS Litigation Authority (NHSLA).

Southmead maternity services are one of only a handful of units in the UK who have achieved this top level.

It means the unit has been rigorously assessed against national standards in maternity which are in place to monitor safety for women giving birth, to improve the quality of clinical care and ensure staff are prepared to deal with emergencies. 

The report summary states: “The maternity service at North Bristol NHS Trust is congratulated for achieving Level 3 against the CNST Maternity Clinical Risk Management Standards 2012-13.

“It was evident to the assessors throughout the assessment that the maternity service has done a considerable amount of work in relation to reviewing and monitoring practice to improve systems and processes which ultimately should have a positive outcome on patient care and safety.”

Ann Remmers, director of midwifery, at North Bristol NHS Trust, said: “Reaching the top level of these clinical standards demonstrates that we consistently ensure that mothers and babies receive safe and appropriate care for their needs at all times. 

“Our unit is one of only 14 in the country to achieve this. The award is testament to an enormous amount of work by our maternity team and their continued focus on patient safety.”

CNST assesses maternity units ensuring they have robust guidelines that follow national evidence, auditing against standard practices, ensuring that there are good risk management and complaint processes and ensuring there is multi-professional training for all staff.