Assuring safe staffing following the Ockenden Review

The independent review of maternity care at Shrewsbury and Telford Hospital NHS Trust by Donna Ockenden identified more than 60 Local Actions and a further 15 key Immediate and Essential Actions to improve maternity care in England. Birthrate Plus® welcomed the report’s recommendations including that the RCM, RCPCH and RCOG and others should work with NHS England and Birthrate Plus® to review the methodology’s contribution to safe staffing. A similar process followed the Francis Inquiry nearly a decade ago. This resulted in Birthrate Plus® achieving NICE endorsement following a review of the methodology against NICE’s criteria for safe staffing in maternity services. Following publication of the Ockenden Review, Birthrate Plus® immediately wrote to the Chief Midwifery Officer welcoming the recommendation and suggesting that an independent expert group be established with the professional bodies, as proposed by Donna Ockenden. Birthrate Plus® is committed to ensuring that its methodology is robust, effectively supports services, aligns with national standards and policy developments.