As new technology is rolled out in maternity wards at Gloucestershire Royal Hospital, the county’s largest care facility has received a top rating from a Government health watchdog.
The Care Quality Commission has published the latest performance figures for health trusts, with GRH being positioned in the best performing category.
It indicates the hospital has the lowest level of concern for Monitor, the body charged with health service assessments.
The rating system, which was introduced last year by the CQC, is based on an intelligent monitoring tool.
It looks at a wide range of information including patient experience, staff surveys and mortality rates.
Chief Executive of the hospitals trust, Dr Frank Harsent said: “I am pleased that this independent and detailed monitoring system demonstrates that we are providing safe and high quality care to our patients.
“Of course, this positive rating does not make us complacent, and we will continue to use a full range of internal measures to monitor the quality of our care so we can continue to make improvements.
“However, we do see this rating as testament to the skilled and compassionate care that our staff are delivering to our patients every day.”
The news has also been welcomed by midwives, who are also championing the launch of a six new wireless baby monitoring system in the delivery suits at GRH.
By removing the cables with the new Avalon Cableless Fetal Monitoring Solution, mothers in the Gloucester delivery suite can now move more freely during labour.
The system also uses Smart Pulse technology to detect the coincidence between the maternal pulse and fetal heart rate, even with twins and triplets during pregnancy, labour and delivery.
Assistant Divisional Director of Midwifery at GRH, Dawn Morrall, said: “Our main aim is to deliver more choice for women in labour. We want to ensure that mothers-to-be and their babies benefit from the advantages of being mobile and upright in labour, while also providing the best possible birth experience.”
Studies show upright positions and walking are associated with a reduction in the length of the first stage of labour. Women in upright positions may also be less likely to have an epidural.
Research has shown that maintaining a supine position in labour may have adverse physiological effects on the mother and her baby.
The Gloucestershire team will also conduct a year long research project, to provide a valuable insight on the benefits of making labour more mobile. It is hoped the results will help better inform decisions for women giving birth, and their babies.
Linda Woods from Philips Healthcare UK commented, “Cableless monitoring is part of the Philips focus on developmental care, which provides a holistic approach to caring for the individual mother and child across the continuum.
“Avalon CL also is an example of how we innovate, by deeply understanding the needs of our customers and their patients.
“We are excited to support the MUM project, as we believe it will offer insights that will inform future innovations.”