30 January 2014 – Airedale Hospital’s Friends and Family Test for Maternity – Favourable First Results

Posted on January 31, 2014 by AireAdmin

The first results of the NHS Friends and Family Test for maternity services have been published today (30 January).

The Friends and Family Test (FFT), which was introduced on 1 April 2013, was extended to maternity services in October last year and provides new and unique insights into the experiences of mothers and how they view their local hospital’s maternity services.

New and expectant mums are given a Friends and Family questionnaire at various stages of their maternity care, for example, after their 36 week antenatal appointment, following the birth of their baby and also after their final postnatal appointment with a midwife.

Each element of that care is given a monthly score based on the responses to one simple question: “How likely are you to recommend our service, ward and maternity care to friends and family if they needed similar care or treatment?”

The results for Airedale Hospital maternity services are:

  • The Friends and Family Test score for December 2013 for antenatal services for Airedale Hospital is 74.
  • The Friends and Family Test score for December 2013 for the labour ward / birthing unit at Airedale Hospital is 82.
  • The Friends and Family Test score for December 2013 for the post natal ward at Airedale Hospital is 82.
  • The Friends and Family Test score for December 2013 for post natal community services for Airedale Hospital is 89.

These scores compare favourably with the national scores for England for December 2013, which are 63 for antenatal services, 75 for the labour ward / birthing unit, 66 for the post natal ward and 74 for post natal community services.

These scores compare favourably with the national scores for England for December 2013, which are 63 for antenatal services, 75 for the labour ward / birthing unit, 66 for the post natal ward and 74 for post natal community services.

The score each trust achieves is based on the satisfaction levels of patients surveyed. This is calculated in the same way by every hospital using a ‘proportion of patients who would strongly recommend minus those who would not recommend, or who are indifferent’. The range of scores that are possible using this method are -100 to +100. The score is not a percentage.

Mums taking part in the survey are able to make comments in addition to the descriptive six point response scale which determines the NHS trust score. For Airedale Hospital, the vast majority of these have been positive:

  • “Friendly service providing lots of information”
  • “Excellent care from very supportive staff”
  • “Fantastic care from all the midwives, take their time with you to explain things”

Rob Dearden, director of nursing at Airedale NHS Foundation Trust said: “The real strength of the Friends and Family Test is that it ensures that the voices of patients and their families are heard – putting people at the centre of their local NHS and enabling them to help shape better services much faster than more traditional survey methods.

“Comments and scores for various stages of maternity care are rapidly available to our maternity team, so practical action can be taken to address problems that concern new and expectant mums, while positive comments are very important in maintaining the morale of hard working staff.

“From ward to board, colleagues can look at the results of the Friends and Family Test and better understand how our maternity services are experienced by mothers and how they can make improvements.”

The Friends and Family Test data is published on the NHS Choices website – www.nhs.uk