Frequently asked questions
Why are you doing this review of the maternity services?
The Mid Yorkshire Hospitals NHS Trust which provides maternity care in Wakefield, Pontefract and Dewsbury areas is considering making changes to the service at Pontefract Hospital.
This could involve no longer offering women the choice of giving birth in the midwife led unit at Pontefract Hospital.
Has the decision already been made?
No, the decision hasn’t been made yet. At the moment, we want to hear from those people and their families who have used maternity services in Wakefield, Pontefract and Dewsbury areas to give us an overall picture of their views. We are also asking the wider public to have their say.
We are working with the Hospital Trust on getting feedback from staff who work in the maternity services so that we get their views too.
Apart from local involvement, we are working with a group of independent clinicians for them to look at the services as they are and let us know their opinions as part of this review.
Isn’t this all just about saving money?
The use of staff and resources does have to be considered as part of planning for services but this is not just about saving money. It is about making the best use of what we have.
Does this affect Dewsbury Midwife Led Unit?
No. The Trust is considering the change because the number of women who give birth at Pontefract is so low that they do not believe keeping the midwife led unit is an effective use of staff or resources. This does not affect Dewsbury Midwife Led Unit.
Would taking the Midwife Led Unit out of Pontefract Hospital mean that the hospital would close?
No. Pontefract Hospital plays a really important role in providing healthcare for the district and will remain open. In fact we are working together with the Hospital Trust, who operate it, on increasing the services that are provided at this hospital.
Pontefract is a thriving hospital. During 2017 – 2018, there were:
• Over 118,000 outpatient appointments for adults
• Over 10,000 CT scans
• Over 7,900 MRI scans
• Over 6,000 outpatient appointments for children
• Over 4,000 operations across 4 operating theatres
• Over 600 patients were admitted to the stroke rehabilitation and medical unit
Does this mean that antenatal and postnatal care will not be available in Pontefract Hospital?
No, this would not affect ante-natal care or post-natal care that is provided at the hospital or in the community. Women who have a normal pregnancy would still have the option of giving birth at home or in a hospital if they choose.
Can women still book into the Pontefract Midwife Led Unit until you finish the review?
Yes, the Unit is open to bookings.
There have been reports that there aren’t enough midwifes. What are you doing about this?
The Hospital Trust have been recruiting new midwives. This is done once a year when new midwives qualify. Last Autumn, they were successful in getting 15 new midwives for the area.
Where can I find more information?
We have included more information about the different birth settings and other useful information onto our website. You can also call 01924 317644 or 01924 315746.
How can I have my say?
You can complete a survey to let us know your views. This is available by telephone and email from:
Engagement opportunities are also available on this website.
We have also asked all GP practices and Pharmacies in the District to display copies of the survey.
What will happen next?
We will be using the overall feedback of what people have told us to help us decide on the way forward. This will be looked at together with information from clinicians, staff and all the background information that we are collecting. It will then be shared with the CCG’s Governing Body for them to consider. Should it be decided that a change of some sort is needed, we will do a full public consultation. At this stage though, we don’t know what the information will show.
What are the timescales for this work?
We are going to be talking to service users, their families and the public until middle of March. After this time, the information will be analysed by an independent organisation and shared with Governing Bodies who will consider the findings. This will take until May 2019.
How can I have my say in other work that the CCG does?
During the year we undertake many engagement and consultation projects. If you would like to get involved in the development of new and existing services and share your experience, you can join our engagement database.