Healthwatch Suffolk survey gives chance to speak on county’s maternity pathway

Stock image - Press Association. Photo credit: Katie Collins/PA Wire

Stock image - Press Association. Photo credit: Katie Collins/PA Wire - Credit: PA

A survey to help highlight where improvements can be made to maternity services in Suffolk is being run until Sunday.

Healthwatch Suffolk wants to speak to new parents and birthing partners to hear of their experiences of maternity services in the county, to inform local hospitals’ service strategy for 2016 and beyond. The survey is open to women who have given birth in Suffolk within the past two years, their partners and birthing partners at births in Suffolk within the same period.

Andy Yacoub, Healthwatch Suffolk’s chief executive, said: “We believe that the views of birthing partners are underrepresented. That is why we have been working with our local acute hospitals to give fathers and birthing partners a say in the maternity pathway. In order to support this work we are calling for fathers, partners, mums or anyone that has been present at a birth in Suffolk to share their experiences.

“Whether you had a good or a bad experience, this is your chance to influence current services and also the shape of future services so please make your voice count.

“Most dads and partners feel that they were treated with dignity and respect across all maternity services but they have told us that there is a need for more information about potential emotional changes in partners and dads after the birth.


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“Having a baby brings many changes to family life - some expected, others not - and this can be a shock to the system. Improved information would help families and partners to adapt to life with a baby quicker.

“People have also indicated that they were not given enough information about what to expect in regards to their own emotional needs after the birth and that they would like more flexibility in respect of overnight stays.

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“I would like to express a big thank you to everyone that has responded so far but we need more responses. Please make sure you have your say because with your views we can make a difference for everyone using maternity services now and for the future.

“We understand that birthing partners’ views are underrepresented nationally, so we would like to hear from you and/or your partner if you have been involved in a birth in Suffolk within the last two years.

“Healthwatch Suffolk is there to amplify the voice of the patient, service user and their families.”

Healthwatch Suffolk will make the findings public once they have been analysed.

The survey closes on Sunday, January 31. To take part, visit www.surveymonkey.com/r/suffolkmaternity or to request a hard copy call 01449 703949.

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