RCM responds to CQC State of Care Report

on 16 October 2020 RCM Maternity Services Covid-19 CQC - Care Quality Commission BAME Race matters Staffing Levels BME staff NHS Staff

Most maternity services are delivering safe, high quality care says the Royal College of Midwives responding to the publication of the CQC State of Care report. The CQC report highlighted that 1 in 4 maternity services required improvement and highlighted the impact of poor working relationships in some maternity services.

Gill Walton, Chief Executive of the Royal College of Midwives, said: “There is no doubt that there are challenges in maternity services that need addressing. It is also important to stress that most services are delivering safe, high quality care, even in the middle of the pandemic. Where services do need improvement we must support them to be better by tackling poor working relationships between professions, giving midwifery a real voice in the leadership of trusts, and making sure maternity services have the staff and resources to make care safer and better. It is also crucial that we learn when things go wrong. This means being open, transparent, involving parents, investigating thoroughly, and using what we learn to get better and reduce the chances of it happening again.”

The CQC also highlighted that those from the black, Asian and minority ethnic (BAME) communities often have poorer outcomes in the NHS.

Gill Walton added, “We know that black women are five times more likely to die in pregnancy, and Asian women twice as likely to die than white women.  We have also seen the unequal impact of the pandemic on NHS staff from BAME communities. These inequalities were there before, but the pandemic put this issue in the spotlight, and we cannot and must not ignore it. We must find out why this is happening and target services and resources to improve the safety and quality of care for these women, and to protect NHS staff.”


To contact the RCM media office call 020 7312 3456 or email [email protected]. Notes to Editors

For information on the RCM’s Race Matters campaign visit https://www.rcm.org.uk/supporting/race-matters/.

The RCM and RCOG called for maternity services to be ringfenced and outlined key actions to ensure maternity services continue functioning efficiently in the second wave of the pandemic earlier this week, see https://www.rcm.org.uk/media-releases/2020/september/leading-royal-colleges-urge-the-nhs-to-learn-lessons-and-avoid-redeploying-maternity-staff-ahead-of-second-wave/.

The RCM is the only trade union and professional association dedicated to serving midwifery and the whole midwifery team. We provide workplace advice and support, professional and clinical guidance, and information, and learning opportunities with our broad range of events, conferences, and online resources. For more information visit the RCM website at https://www.rcm.org.uk/.