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Maternity Service Review

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MidCentral and Whanganui District Health Board’s have commissioned an independent review of the joint Regional Women’s Health Service.


MidCentral and Whanganui District Health Board’s have commissioned an independent review of the joint Regional Women’s Health Service following a series of serious and tragic events in 2014 and 2015 in which five babies died and two were seriously harmed.
The independent review was commissioned to see what improvements were needed.
Mothers and families affected have been kept informed of the review and the DHBs have offered their regrets to the families.
The review made a series of recommendations and provides guidance on how the DHBs may strengthen the leadership and the culture of the Regional Women’s Health Service. It also highlighted a range of actions including:
  • MidCentral and Whanganui DHBs to review the model for the Regional Women’s Health Service
  • MidCentral to establish a stronger partnership between lead maternity carers (LMCs) and the hospital services to improve collaboration for antenatal, birth and post-natal care.
  • MidCentral’s model of service for the future needs to allow for improved collaboration and continuity of LMC involvement.
MidCentral DHB will be implementing all recommendations and is developing a comprehensive work programme and action plan.  It has made a number of changes immediately, including additional associate midwifery roles, an additional O&G position, and a new policy around reading cardiotocography (CTG) tracing.
Delivering healthcare is complex. Often there is no one cause for an adverse event. However, the review will guide MDHB leadership on work to ensure the service is delivering the best possible outcomes for patients and their families.
A steering group has been set up to oversee the implementation of all recommendations, and this group will report to the DHB’s Executive Leadership Team, and through the Board’s Hospital Advisory Committee.
The work programme will be supported by a clear articulation of the vision and values for maternity services, that focuses on partnership with women and their families; partnership between all clinicians involved in their care and an overarching focus on improving the quality of care and outcome for women and their babies.

Key Documents

 Board Documents

Workstream Documents

Media releases 

MidCentral DHB media releases:

Whanganui DHB media releases


Links for further information 

​Document Format

Most documents are available in Acrobat (PDF) format. Some documents are also available in other formats (doc, xls, html etc.) or as a printed version (hard copy). Please note, due to cost, a different format or printed version may not be available.

To request a different format or printed version, please contact the MidCentral District Health Board Communications Unit.

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