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Maternity Services: Death

Question for Department of Health and Social Care

UIN 744, tabled on 11 May 2022

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what steps he is taking to reduce deaths in NHS maternity units.

Answered on

18 May 2022

The Maternity Safety Strategy has funded initiatives such as the Saving Babies Lives Care Bundle, Maternal Medicine Networks and Maternal Mental Health Hubs to halve the number of stillbirths, maternal and neonatal deaths by 2025. Since 2010, these initiatives have contributed to a 25% reduction in the stillbirth rate, a 36% reduction in the neonatal mortality rate for babies born over the 24-week gestational age of viability, and a 17% reduction in maternal mortality.

NHS England are investing £127 million into the maternity system to ensure safe staffing levels in maternity and neonatal care. This is in addition to £95 million to support the recruitment of 1,200 more midwives and 100 more consultant obstetricians. A further £6.8 million is being provided to support Local Maternity Systems to implement equity and equality action plans and implement enhanced Continuity of Carer to improve safe outcomes for mothers and babies from black, Asian and mixed ethnic groups and those living in the most deprived areas.