In #MatExp every day truly is change day, we can hardly keep pace with what the many people in the #MatExp community are getting up to. #MatExp is for everyone: women, families and all types of health professionals or people interested in maternity care, you do not need to work in maternity to have an impact.
Last year Florence undertook the #lithotomy challenge and wrote a very popular blog about it. Now, eighteen months later, it is still sparking conversations; almost every week she has complete strangers coming up to her and asking if that was indeed her as they have seen it or heard about it. Click here to see more on #Matexp 2015 activities.
#MatExp is very much alive and kicking and buzzing with activity. We are not big fans of statistics, but we are rather proud of the fact #MatExp has over 500 million Twitter impressions and is attracting global interest.
How to get involved
So this is a brief update to give you a few ideas as to how to get involved with this year’s #FabChangeDay. Of course you can take any action you want, all we ask is you do something to improve maternity experience and tell us about it!
Here are a few thoughts that we hope will spark ideas for your #MatExp #FabChangeDay actions!
- Read Flo’s BMJ blog and think about what action you could take to improve things for the women and families you care for
- Look at
- @GP_IFN for primary care professionals supporting infant feeding
- heartmummy.co.uk, by Helen Calvert, with all sorts of information on #hospitalbreastfeeding and new families
- the award winning videos (in 3 languages) for women with gestational diabetes: http://www.
womenwithgestationaldiabetes. com/”, as an example of helping different groups of women
- Our crowd-sourced #MatExp website matexp.org.uk will provide lots more inspiration – and a fabulous community to support and encourage you
The NHS Maternity Review gave a shoutout for #MatExp by emphasising the importance of a grass roots movement for change:
“This means every individual taking personal responsibility for supporting improvement whether it be by engaging with local improvement initiatives, constructively challenging poor practice, building better relationships with members of other professions or making the most of opportunities to learn and improve skills.
Similarly, women and their families can be powerful agents for change. They can help to shape their own care by making well-informed choices to ensure safe, personalised care is built around them (although we recognise that vulnerable women may need extra support to do this).”
• Copying the cup of tea challenge from Catherine Williams @BerksMaternity, sit down with a cup of tea and read ‘Better Births’ better still do it with a friend and think how you can help with maternity transformation.
• Or be bold. If you are an obstetrician, have a ‘random’ chat with a woman with something to say about maternity care. Or if you are a woman with something to say, and would love to understand what makes an obstetrician tick, sign up too! #MatExp #FabRCT – more information about RCT (randomised coffee trial) is here.
Other ‘perspectives’ welcome to join too!
• Our current project ‘Nobody’s patient’ focuses on three groups of women:
- Families with babies in neo-natal units (NNU).
- Severely ill women faced with an unexpectedly serious illness, sometimes life threatening, in pregnancy or the immediate postnatal period.
- Women who miscarry in the second trimester.
Here is Leigh Kendall’s Leigh’s very powerful blog roundup of the ‘Nobody’s Patient’ Whose Shoes? workshop at St George’s hospital 23 Sept 2016 #HugosLegacy
• Take a look at this wonderful graphic drawn by Anna Geyer, New Possibilities at a focus group Gill Phillipsran with fab Catherine MacLennan @ThePinksNBlues.
And watch this very powerful video by Davinia Watson about her experience of PPROM.
Have a think about what you could do to improve care for these women.
- Maternal mental health is also a big issue
- Take a look at #Birthtraumachat run by Emma-Jane Sasaru @lovingbabyuk and Susanne Remic @ghostwritermumm
- There is some great online perinatal mental health training openly available to browse, developed by Carrie Ladd @LaddCar and colleagues at the RCGP
- And there is much learning in ‘Listen, a poem’ which Clare Kay wrote and read at #WomensVoices16
- Personalisation is a key element of #BetterBirths – listening properly to women’s voices is key. Here is the Steller story Gill wrote as a roundup of #WomensVoices16
- Make a cup of tea & take 15mins to sit and talk to a woman honestly about her experience, listen to what she says.
- Ask if there is a local MSLC or Maternity Voices group – how can you get involved, find out what they do
- Read the Picker policy briefing ‘State of maternity services in England, 2016 ( note the section telling you more about #MatExp #WhoseShoes achievements!) and consider how it might inspire you
- Read the Kings Fund report on how women’s feedback is being used to improve services (graffiti boards was an idea that came from our very first worksho at Kingston hospital) and again think what you could do
And finally why not give the #lithotomychallenge a go – see how it feels and don’t forget to tweet us your pictures!
Happy #MatExp #FabChangeday everyone! matexp.org.uk