Henrietta’s story – International Day of the Midwife 2024

To mark International Day of the Midwife we are delighted to celebrate and hear from some of our talented midwives. Henrietta, our Associate Safety and Learning Lead, talks about her journey so far.

My name is Henrietta and I qualified as a Midwife in 2017 from the Birmingham City University. I have more recently completed my MSc in Quality and Patient Safety at the University of Nottingham in 2022. I have now worked as a Midwife within the NHS for five years and continue to work clinical shifts alongside my role at NHS Resolution that commenced in January 2024.

I currently work in the Safety and Learning Team, as the Associate Safety & Learning Lead for the Midlands and East Region. Within my role, I work alongside other health care professionals with various clinical backgrounds to support Member Trusts to understand their claims risk profiles and improve patient safety. The team aims to do this in a variety of ways, including hosting webinars and in-person events, publishing thematic reviews and meeting with Trusts.

My Midwifery career began when I graduated in 2017, since then I have had the opportunity to work clinically in all areas of maternity. I spent most of my time on delivery suites and loved supporting women through labour and the immediate postnatal period. In 2020 I began the role as ‘Patient Experience Midwife’ where I supported a Trust to make quality improvements through feedback from a variety of channels. Being able to support families through such a life changing period was very rewarding.

From this post, I began working in Maternity Governance, where I gained valuable experience in risk management, incident management and more recently supported with the launch of PSIRF (Patient Safety Incident Response Framework). Within this role, I got to work alongside several arm’s length bodies, whilst still maintaining visibility in clinical areas. I was lucky enough to work alongside great clinicians on very exciting quality improvement projects, including the launch of a Major Obstetric Haemorrhage Risk Assessment Tool.

Looking back, when finishing my A-levels, I was completely undecided about what career path I would like to take. Eventually I concluded that I wanted to work within the NHS but was unsure on which profession. I completed an Open University Course in Health and Social Care and volunteered at my local hospital on the postnatal ward. I made women cups of tea and supported Midwives with breastfeeding support. I really enjoyed it and decided Midwifery was for me. Since I made the decision, I have not looked back. On reflection, when I began University I was completely naïve to how much influence Midwives have, not only on maternity care but also have a vast contribution to public health. It is a unique and privileged profession.

This is the first role I have had, working alongside colleagues with varying clinical backgrounds. I have learnt so much in a short space of time. Everyone works collaboratively towards the same goal and ultimately, we share the same passion for patient safety. Everyone goes above and beyond to support each other; I have much admiration for my colleagues and love to hear about everyone’s different experiences.

Being from a clinical background provides us with a unique lens and insight onto data that is held within the scorecard, for example. It enables us to draw on clinical themes whilst also having knowledge on NHS processes and challenges. I feel I can empathise with clinicians and provide mutual support to our colleagues within the claims department.

 

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