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Our service developments

As a Foundation Trust, Liverpool Women’s works hard to ensure that we can continue to invest in the services we provide to the benefit of our patients and their families.

  • Maternity Services

    Liverpool Women’s has been able to make significant investment in our Maternity Services due to the support of our host Primary Care Trust. The last year has seen the consolidation of these developments. We were also able to continue to work in close collaboration with the PCT to benchmark resources for maternity services and secure further investment for 2010/11 as follows

    We have increased Consultant Obstetrician cover on our Delivery Suite to 98 hours per week

    Following targeted investment from our PCT and in line with national best practice, we have increased consultant cover on the delivery suite from 56 to 98 hours per week, improving access to senior clinical decision making. This was operational from autumn 2009 following consultation and the successful recruitment of additional consultant obstetrician posts.

    The ‘Big Push’ Project to reconfigure maternity services

    Over the last two years, the Trust has reviewed its model of care for maternity services and the associated facilities required to deliver this service. Approval was given in February 2010 for the first phase to extend and reconfigure some of our inpatient facilities. This has been completed to a very high standard and was opened to patients in summer 2010. The second phase of investment will see the completion of the inpatient refurbishment and this work will start in March 2011. Our inpatient areas are a priority and responding to the needs of patients and providing a positive patient experience are paramount.

  • Hewitt Centre for Reproductive Medicine

    The Trust’s Reproductive Medicine services continue to go from strength to strength. 2009/10 was a landmark year for the service. We have eliminated waiting times for IVF and patients are now able to access treatment as soon as they are referred. We have expanded the NHS sperm bank benefiting couples requiring donor sperm. We are now able to offer IVF as an option to viral discordant couples and are the only centre in the North of England to do this. We have trialled new hormone tests to be able to better assess a woman’s response to fertility drugs. We have also opened our brand new £5m facility on our Crown Street site which offers an exceptional patient environment, state of the art embryology laboratories and a dedicated andrology suite. Other developments over the last year have seen the unit:

    • Agree with local commissioners that the Hewitt Centre will be the semenology centre for Cheshire and Merseyside.
    • Implement the agreed management for single embryo transfer which has successfully reduced twinning rates in assisted conception from 24% to 16%.
  • Development of a dedicated Private Patient Unit

    Liverpool Women’s private patient unit, called the Catharine Suite opened in May 2009. This gives a choice to patients to have their treatment under the care of experienced consultants and healthcare professionals while remaining within the safety of an NHS setting. The unit provides the majority of gynaecology private work in Liverpool and offers increasing options for cosmetic surgery.

  • Gynaecological cancer services

    Liverpool Women’s is the Gynaecological Cancer Centre for Cheshire and Merseyside. We have four specialist trained surgeons and a dedicated specialist nursing team who support all aspects of gynaecological cancer care for the patients who are referred to the service.

    Our gynaecological cancer services have been endorsed by very strong peer reviews for both core services and colposcopy services. We have achieved all new national targets and developed an outstanding patient facility in collaboration with the King’s Fund. The new patient facility is named the Mulberry Suite and offers an en suite patient and family accommodation for patients at the end of life, giving much needed privacy at this very difficult time. The suite has been designed with the close involvement of patients and their relatives and was opened in late 2009.

    We have worked very closely with colleagues who provide Chemotherapy Services at Clatterbridge Centre for Oncology to improve local access for patients. Previously any woman requiring chemotherapy for the treatment of gynaecological cancer from Merseyside or Cheshire had to travel to Clatterbridge Centre for Oncology on the Wirral. Now the two hospitals have worked together to develop facilities at Crown Street so that chemotherapy can be delivered locally. This will be of benefit to women across Merseyside.

  • Neonatology

    Liverpool Women’s is the Level 3 unit for the region and as such offers care to the most complex and poorly of newborn babies. The Unit has 48 neonatal cots and treats over 1,000 babies a year mainly from Merseyside and Cheshire but will accept any baby from anywhere in the UK. The Neonatal Unit is proud to benchmark its clinical outcomes with those of the international Vermont Oxford Network. This has led to a focus on the management of neonatal infection and the funding to improve benchmarking of neonatal units across the UK. Neonatal Infection and Staffing Following the publication of the most recent Vermont Oxford Network data the Trust increased its focus on the management of neonatal infection. After assessing the contributory factors, the Trust invested an additional £200k in staffing which has seen more specialist nursing staff trained and employed. Additional capital funding has been approved for 2010 to support the reconfiguration of facilities on the unit. The Trust has also funded a research post to develop benchmarking with other UK units. 24/7 Neonatal Transport Service In conjunction with the Neonatal Network, the Trust has supported the development of a 24/7 Neonatal Transport Service for Cheshire and Merseyside. The service commenced in early 2011. This now means that babies from across Merseyside and Cheshire are able to access the level of care appropriate to their needs at any time. This is a very significant improvement for our patients and their families