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North Central London

Who we are and our vision

Who we are

North Central London Maternity System is a collaboration of maternity service providers, commissioners, Local Authorities, GPs service users (women and their families).

Our vision

To strengthen relationships between pregnant women (and their families), and those providing their care. When our local maternity system is truly centred on these relationships many of the barriers to providing effective, efficient and safe care will disappear. Women will feel in control of their own pregnancy and the choices they make. Not only will this result in a more sustainable solution, but also outcomes related to experience as well as more traditional quality measures would improve.

Community antenatal and postnatal services

Community antenatal and postnatal services

Each hospital offers community antenatal and postnatal care for women living in their designated ‘catchment areas’. This care will be provided at community locations such as GP surgeries, health centres and children’s centres.

Antenatal care for women outside of the local area and for those requiring specialist clinics will usually be provided at the hospital antenatal clinic.

Women can either self-refer, or seek referral via their GP to the hospital of their choice.

Postnatal care is provided to women in the catchment area at their home and in community locations. Some postnatal services will be provided in the hospitals. Women who live outside of the catchment area will be seen by their local community midwifery services.

Labour and birth services

Labour and birth services

Each hospital provides a combination of services, facilitating birth in all settings. Each hospital has an obstetric labour ward, an alongside midwifery led birth centre and the provision of homebirth services. All units have birthing pools and some units offer complimentary therapies. At Edgware there is a standalone birth centre

Specialist services

Specialist services in our area

Elizabeth Garret Anderson unit at University College London Hospitals (UCLH), Camden: Fetal medicine unit, maternal medicine services, neonatal Intensive Care Unit, FGM clinic, smoking cessation service, private patient care, perinatal mental health service (antenatal only), specialist diabetes service, high risk antenatal services, Consultant midwife birth choices clinic, tongue-tie service, and homebirth service.

Barnet Hospital, Barnet: Local neonatal unit, FGM clinic, smoking cessation service, perinatal mental health service (due to be launched on 20 November 2017), fetal medicine services, high risk antenatal service, Consultant midwife birth choices clinic, specialist diabetes service, socially complex caseload team and homebirth service.

Royal Free, Hampstead: Local neonatal unit, high risk antenatal services , specialist diabetes service, smoking cessation service, private patient care, fetal medicine services, perinatal mental health service (due to be launched on 20 November 2017), high risk antenatal service, Consultant midwife birth choices clinic, homebirth service, tongue-tie service .

North Middlesex Hospital, Edmonton: Local neonatal Unit, specialist diabetes service, specialist HIV services, smoking cessation service, complex social team, perinatal mental health service (due to be launched on 20 November 2017), high risk antenatal service.

Whittington Hospital, Archway: Local Neonatal Unit, maternal medicine service, fetal medicine service, specialist diabetic service, smoking cessation service, perinatal mental health service (antenatal and postnatal), complex social team, high risk antenatal service and homebirth service.

Breastfeeding support

Breastfeeding support

Each hospital has its own specialised infant feeding team, offering antenatal classes, inpatient support following birth and postnatal support at home and in our affiliated children’s centres. There are tongue-tie reversal services at two of our hospitals.

Mental health support

Mental health support

Every London borough has an IAPT service which offers free, confidential talking therapy for people who have symptoms of anxiety or depression. Click here for more information.

Perinatal mental health services are currently being developed across the catchment area, and consist of a team of specialist mental health nurses and psychiatrists who work in collaboration with the maternity services to care for women with complex mental health needs.

Improving Services

Improving maternity services in North Central London

North Central London is an ‘Early Adopter’ site. This means that we have been awarded funding by NHS England to fast track improvements to the services we provide to women and their families. Over the next few years we will be focusing on the following areas:

  • Developing community hubs
    • We are planning to set up community hubs across the North Central London area. These will be a focus for community midwifery services but will also allow other services to be provided alongside midwifery. We will concentrate on providing continuity of carer in the antenatal and postnatal period and also for the birth for specific groups of people.
  • Personalised care and choice
    • We will be focusing on making maternity care specific to the need of individuals. In the future we want women to be able to say, when asked, that they were offered choice throughout their pregnancy, during the birth and in the postnatal period.
  • Single Point of Access
    • We plan to standardise the process for booking for antenatal care through a single point of access. We also want to make it simpler for people to change hospital if they wish to without the need to repeat the booking process.
  • Collaborative working
    • We plan to address the issues of boundaries within our local maternity system so that midwives can continue to provide continuity of carer across current catchment areas. We will also look at ways in which midwives and doctors and learn together.
  • Quality and safety
    • We will be focusing on sharing learning from research and audit to drive improvements in the quality and safety of our services.
  • Maternity Voice Partnerships
    • Formerly known as Maternity Service Liaison Committee’s, these groups consist of new mums, midwives, doctors and other allied health professionals who meet to discuss, learn and help share ideas for improved services across North Central London. A variety of groups are being established to link with the local hospitals. There is also a more strategic group for North Central London.

How to provide feedback

Each Trust has its own Patient Advice and Liaison Service – and this service is the platform by which comments and complaints can be collected and investigated, whilst connecting women with the appropriate services to answer their concerns and questions.