A HEALTH REGULATOR has told the maternity services in Stroud to make improvements after an inspection. 

The Care Quality Commission (CQC) rated the services at Stroud Maternity Hospital, run by Gloucestershire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, as requires improvement following an inspection in December.  

The inspection was carried out as part of CQC’s national maternity services inspection programme. 

The overall maternity service ratings at is that requires improvement while the unit was also rated as requires improvement in the safe and well-led categories. 

This inspection didn’t rate how effective, caring and responsive the service was.  

This is the first-time maternity services at Stroud Maternity hospital has been rated as a standalone core service as previously, maternity and gynaecology services were inspected and rated together. 

The overall ratings for Gloucestershire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust remain as requires improvement.

Carolyn Jenkinson, CQC’s deputy director of secondary and specialist healthcare, said: “When we inspected maternity services at Stroud Maternity Hospital, we were disappointed in the quality of care being provided to women, people using the service, and their babies.

"Behind this, was a drop in the effectiveness of leadership across these services.

"Although leaders recognised and reported significant risks and issues, they didn't always act quickly to reduce the impact of them, putting people at risk. 

“Women, people using the service and their babies were also at risk, after staff concerns about disagreements they were having with the local ambulance around the urgency with which they should attend the service when called, weren’t being acted on.

"However, we didn’t hear or see any actions to resolve or improve this.

“Despite the issues we found, we also saw staff who worked well together for the benefit of everyone using the service.

"They managed safety incidents well and learned lessons from them, with a real commitment to continual improvement.

“The trust needs to ensure robust improvements are implemented.

"Following the inspection, we told the trust the areas where they needed to focus on improving.

"We will return to check this has been done and will continue to closely monitor the service while this happens.”

In a statement, the Trust said: "Following the CQC inspection, the team have strengthened processes around medicines and the checking of equipment.

"They have also ensured that routine data collection is in place for the 36-week place of birth assessment, helping mums to be guided to the best place of care for them and their babies.

"We are determined that this report will provide further momentum to address the issues identified and are working hard to engage and involve staff and local communities to improve our services.

"We expect the CQC to re-inspect the service soon and will be working with colleagues and partners to obtain an improved overall rating."

Read the report - tinyurl.com/mr3cjz9u