A 14-week public consultation on how and where some maternity, neonatal, and children’s surgical services could be provided in the future in NCL is running until 17 March 2024, and we’re keen to hear as many views as possible.
The Start Well consultation aims to improve experience, access, and outcomes for both patients and staff and make maternity, neonatal, and children’s surgical services sustainable in the long term.
We are now seeking views on proposed changes that include reducing the number of NCL hospitals delivering maternity and neonatal care from five to four and closing the birth suites at Edgware Birth Centre. For children’s surgery, the proposals include creating two ‘centres of expertise’ at Great Ormond Street Hospital and UCLH which could mean quicker and better-quality care for babies and small children who need operations.
The proposals have been developed with input from doctors, midwives, nurses, and other health professionals, working together with families with experience of these services.
No decisions on changes to services have yet been made and NCL ICB and NHS England (London) Specialised Commissioning are consulting on the proposals with an open mind.
Engaging with staff and local people
The Start Well team have been out and about speaking to staff and local people at consultation meetings and events. These include dedicated staff sessions, focus groups with people who have been identified through an integrated impact assessment as potentially being more impacted if the proposals were implemented, meetings with patient, community and faith groups, and stalls in hospitals where patients and their families can find out more and ask questions.
As the proposals could potentially impact residents outside of North Central London, the team have also been seeking opportunities to speak to people in Brent, Harrow, North East London, and Herts. This weekend we attended a screening session at Central Brent Mosque to speak to local families about the proposed changes and how to get involved in the consultation.
Informal drop-in sessions
Informal drop-in sessions will take place in February and early March at community venues in Barnet, Brent, Camden, Enfield, Haringey, and Islington. We are inviting anyone to come and give feedback on the proposals or talk to senior clinicians from local hospitals and the Start Well programme team. Visit our website to find a session in your area.
Other ways to feedback include:
- Email: StartWellConsultation@ors.org.uk
- Phone: 0800 324 7005
- Write to: Opinion Research Services, FREEPOST SS1018, PO Box 530, Swansea SA1 1ZL.
You can request a printed questionnaire, or information in a different format or language, using the details above.
The consultation runs until 17 March 2024.