Midwifery leaders and managers ‘batten down the hatches’
The economic climate in England over the next decade presents greater challenges than ever before for health and social care services. It is estimated that if the current model of health care provision continues, the NHS will face a funding gap of around £44–54 billion by 2020/21 (Nuffield Trust, 2012). This is based on the gap between the projected spending requirements and available resources. Many midwifery managers and leaders are faced with making tough financial decisions about how they ensure the safe provision of high quality maternity care, while meeting Trust requirements for efficiency savings.
Despite financial challenges, leaders and managers continue to ensure that their services provide dynamic, integrated models of care that respond to the changing health and social care needs of women and their families. The recent Department of Health investment to improve birth environments in England has resulted in redesigned/refurbished maternity care environments that midwives and women who use these services can be proud of. Sadly such investment is unlikely to continue as austerity plans influence the way forward.
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