There are 4 digital maternity projects running within the workstream to help NHS England meet its objective of improving outcomes in maternity services in England:
1. Maternity Digital Maturity Assessment (DMA)
The National Maternity DMA report provides a rich, national picture of digital maturity in England. The reports are designed to be used together and aim to equip maternity providers with insight and resources to aid local planning for the investment and adoption of digital technologies.
2. Interoperable Maternity Records
The Digital Maternity Interoperability project was to create a professionally agreed standard for maternity records. NHS Digital (now NHS England) now has a Maternity Record Standard relating to direct patient care. This will enable all maternity clinical systems to consistently capture information and ‘speak the same language’.
The second phase of this project is ensuring the use of standard terminology within the maternity record and its messaging to ensure different systems can share and interpret the information in the record. This enables everyone involved (including women themselves) to have access to a standardised set of paperless, digital maternity records.
The third phase of the interoperability development will enable healthcare professionals to search for and retrieve maternity records ensuring the records are accessible at the point of care, support safer care for women and their babies plus it will reduce the amount of paper used across the service.
3. Women’s Digital Care Record
A new priority and expectation was given for NHS Digital and NHS England to progress with the implementation of electronic personal records for pregnant women after an in-depth review in 2018. The Women’s Digital Care Records project supports women with the opportunity to contribute towards their record and promote a greater understanding of the care they receive.
4. A Digital Toolset
The NHS have already made great progress in this project by implementing:
- new sign-posting links allowing users to get straight to the content they want.
- important information highlights on pages to make it clearer for pregnant women when they need to seek help.
- links to other useful and NHS approved apps within the NHS Health Apps Library
- new pregnancy week by week content available about the baby’s development, changes to the woman’s body and what women should start thinking about at each stage of pregnancy.