Trio of Welsh midwives win national award for making maternity care safer
Three midwives from NHS Wales Shared Services Partnership have won a national award for their work to make emergency maternity care in the community safer. It has been so successful that it is now mandatory training for maternity teams across Wales.
The trio - Sarah Morris, Sarah Hookes, and Jane Storey - received the Excellence in Midwifery for Education & Learning sponsored by the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) at the Royal College of Midwives (RCM) annual awards in London on 19 May.
RCM’s Chief Executive, Gill Walton said: “Improving safety is the number one priority for maternity care and this team have delivered on this in spades. Their work has led to important changes nationally and is right now making a real difference to the care of women and babies right at the frontline. All three have earned the plaudits their work is gaining and richly deserve to be applauded and recognised for it. This award will certainly help to do that, and they are richly deserving recipients of it.”
The three midwives developed a training programme for the whole community midwifery team that is improving the safety of emergency maternity care for women having births outside hospital, such as home births and midwife led birth centres. Crucially, the training, named Community PROMPT Wales –
(PRactical Obstetric Multi-Professional Training) has been designed to take place in the community, right where the care is delivered. All community midwives and maternity support workers attend annually, and are joined by student midwives and paramedics from the Welsh Ambulance Service NHS Trust.
Sarah, Sarah and Jane said, “We are overjoyed to have Community PROMPT Wales recognised in this way and to receive an award from the RCM is the greatest honour. This innovative programme has changed the landscape of obstetric emergency training and we are proud to have recently worked with the PROMPT Maternity Foundation to develop a similar programme for the UK so midwives, women and babies can benefit from this outside of Wales. We would like to thank Jonathan Webb, Head of Safety & Learning for his support and encouragement, all those who assisted with the development of the programme and Heads of Midwifery. However, the success of this programme is largely due to our midwifery colleagues who facilitate this training in their local health boards and we want to applaud them for their dedication; this award is for them too.”
Andrea Sutcliffe, Chief Executive and Registrar at the NMC, said: “I’m delighted the NMC has sponsored the RCM award for Excellence in Midwifery for Education & Learning this year and I’m thrilled the team from NHS Wales Shared Services Partnership has won. Improving the safety of maternity care services is an absolute priority and is the central focus of this initiative. The training programme is making a real difference to the lives of women and babies, who are now safer because of it. Huge congratulations to Sarah, Jane and Sarah – you are a true credit to the midwifery profession.”
A NHS Wales Shared Services Partnership spokesperson, said: “NWSSP is very proud of the Community PROMPT Wales programme – developed in Wales to support and prepare midwife-led teams to effectively manage childbirth emergencies in community settings. With the support of local faculties across NHS Wales, Sarah, Sarah & Jane have worked tirelessly to make this programme a success and we congratulate them on winning this prestigious award today.”
Sarah Hookes was also the RCM's Midwife of the year for Wales in 2021.
To contact the RCM Media Office call 020 7312 3456, or email [email protected].
Notes to Editor
For more information on the RCM awards and the full list of winners visit RCM Awards 2023 | Royal College of Midwives Awards UK.
To read about Sarah's 2021 award win see Rhyl midwife crowned Wales Midwife of the Year (rcm.org.uk).
The Royal College of Midwives (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 | A professional organisation and trade union dedicated to serving the whole midwifery team.