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One Voice letter to Nadine Dorries on improving maternity service buildings

14th April 2021

Leading health organisations have called for upgrades to England’s NHS maternity service buildings to improve care for women and conditions for staff in a letter to Health Minister Nadine Dorries today.

Women’s maternity care was significantly impacted during the pandemic, made worse by old, poorly designed buildings, according to the One Voice coalition of health organisations and the Society of Radiographers.  Many women were unable to have their partners with them because the layout of maternity facilities prevented social distancing, and would have put women, their partners and other service users at risk of catching the virus.  One Voice is calling for better design and use of space, such as having single rooms and dedicated areas for maternity clinics and scans.

Alison Morton, Acting Executive Director at the Institute of Health Visiting, commented:

“As a member of the One Voice coalition of health partners, we support this call from our maternity colleagues for upgrades to England’s NHS maternity service buildings. The government’s recent White Paper on health and social care has highlighted once again that positive outcomes are fundamentally delivered “in a place”. By improving the quality and safety of the environments in which we work, through sustained investment in “place”, we can make a big difference to the outcomes and experiences of care that we provide to families, as well as the health and wellbeing of the workforce.”