England’s Chief Nursing Officer and Chief Midwifery Officer visit Sherwood Forest Hospitals

Posted Friday, November 24, 2023 10:43 AM

England’s Chief Nursing Officer and Chief Midwifery Officer visit Sherwood Forest Hospitals

The work of Sherwood Forest Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust’s maternity team was in the spotlight when England’s Chief Nursing Officer and Chief Midwifery Officer visited King’s Mill Hospital today (Thursday 23 November).

Dame Ruth May, Chief Nursing Officer for England, and Kate Brintworth, Chief Midwifery Officer for England, spoke to midwives, nurses and maternity support workers who showcased various aspects of their work.

Dame Ruth and Kate Brintworth were given a tour of Sherwood Birthing Unit, the Maternity Ward, and Neonatal Unit at King’s Mill, where maternity services were rated ‘good’ in the Care Quality Commission’s (CQC) latest report.

This is the first time that England’s Chief Nursing Officer has visited the Trust since it achieved Pathway to Excellence accreditation almost exactly a year ago.

The designation means that the Trust is globally recognised as an excellent place for nurses and midwives to work. Sherwood Forest Hospitals became one of only five in Europe to receive Pathway to Excellence® designation from the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC), showing its commitment to creating a healthy work environment where nurses feel empowered and valued.

Recruitment and Retention Midwife Sharon Parker explained how the Trust creates a safe, nurturing environment for newly-qualified midwives.

Since taking up post in 2022, Sharon has successfully recruited into all vacant posts for newly-qualified midwives and all these midwives still work for the Trust - something that is recognised as a huge success given the challenge nationally. 

Several newly-qualified midwives have said they don’t know where they’d be without the support of Sharon, who received the Chief Midwifery Officer Silver Award earlier this year in recognition of going above and beyond in her role.

The Trust also shared news of its Neonatal team achieving Stage 2 Baby Friendly accreditation from the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF). The programme enables services to support families with feeding and help parents build a close and loving relationship with their baby.

Claire Allison, Tobacco Dependence Maternity Lead for the Trust’s maternity tobacco treatment service, explained how the Trust supports pregnant families to quit smoking.

The specialist Phoenix team recognises that smoking in pregnancy is the result of addiction to nicotine, which requires treatment, so they provide free, friendly support that is tailored to each individual - without judgement or pressure.

More than 185 babies have been born ‘smoke-free’ as a result of the team’s support.

The Chief Nursing Officer and Chief Midwifery Officer presented the Pastoral Care Award in recognition of the support the Trust provides to its internationally educated Nurses and Midwives from the moment the recruitment process begins and throughout their employment.

The Trust has been recruiting international colleagues for more than four years and currently has more than 200 international Nurses and two international Midwives.

The Trust’s Pastoral Care nurses Shintel Sibanda and Ruby Grace Manalo ensure international colleagues are supported in all aspects of their career and life in the UK.

Chief Nurse Phil Bolton said: “I am always immensely proud of our teams and the care and dedication they provide to our patients. I am really pleased to be able to showcase just some of the great things going on here at Sherwood Forest Hospitals to two of our most senior leaders.”

Paula Shore, Director of Midwifery and Divisional Director of Nursing for Women and Children’s at Sherwood Forest Hospitals, said: “Thank you to Dame Ruth and Kate for visiting Sherwood Forest Hospitals. It was an excellent opportunity for colleagues across the Division to meet them and share the fantastic work they are doing to support our women and families.”

Dame Ruth said: “It has been wonderful to be with nurses, midwives, and maternity support workers today, listening to what is important to them and seeing the success they’ve had particularly with recruitment, retention and international recruitment. It has been a great opportunity to meet, listen to, and congratulate colleagues here at Sherwood Forest Hospitals.”

Kate Brintworth said: “I’m delighted to have been here today, and I am particularly interested in hearing about the successes the team have had with their work on choice, making women and families know that what they want is important, and that the team is going to wrap themselves around them. There is some fantastic work being done here at Sherwood Forest Hospitals - positive culture, great teamwork, and a clear emphasis on putting women, babies and families first.”

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