Maternity services in Cornwall to launch new Personalised Care Plan

As part of the Personalisation and Choice agenda of the NHS Long Term Plan, the Royal Cornwall Hospitals NHS Trust and Kernow Maternity Voices Partnership (KMVP) are overseeing the launch of a new Personalised Care Plan.
The Personalised Care Plan is intended to help users support personalised care, to make informed decisions and give informed consent. It uses the acronym “BRAIN”, which stands for ‘Benefits’, ‘Risks’, ‘Alternatives’, ‘Intuition’ and ‘do Nothing.’ Each item is intended to raise different questions around what the best care might be for any individual, what potential risks could be involved, and what other options might be available.

“The development of this Personalised Care Plan was kick-started by the feedback shared with us by families across Cornwall and the isles of Scilly,”

Nicki Burnett, KMVP Chair, explains. “It was clear that one of the main things that impacted the experiences of women, pregnant people and their families was how much they felt involved in the decisions about their care and whether they were supported to understand their options and their subsequent decisions respected. The care plan itself is based on a nationally acclaimed publication developed in Manchester and has been adapted by a group of service users and KMVP volunteers to ensure it accurately reflected what the community wants. Service users will be central to the ongoing evaluation of the care plan.”

“Personalised care is not only an evidenced-based approach that improves patient safety, it also ensures a process is followed in shared decision making and informed choice and consent,”

explains Lead Transformation Midwife Zoe Nelson. “The impact of a personalised care plan on patient experience should not be underestimated. Clinicians are being asked to challenge the traditional way they may have broached conversations and supported individualised plans in the past, even if they fall outside of our guidelines we work towards.”

“The Montgomery ruling has clearly given the steer for informed choice with enough accurate and evidence based information to make this choice,” Zoe continues. “The Personalised Care Plan will then support a framework for these conversations.”

Training for the Personalised Care Plan is currently being offered, and the teams have launched a 14-day count down for this on social media, which began on Monday 14th June. Community Matron Sam Gale says: “I am really pleased that all the hard work done by so many has come to fruition in the form of such a great tool. Our community colleagues are busy completing their training, and we can’t wait to make these available to all pregnant people from Monday 28th June when we will be officially launching them.”

“We know that personalised care equals safe care,”

Nikki concludes. “We are committed to continuing to support RCHT to develop, implement and evaluate improvements and want to thank all the colleagues who have listened and been open to reflective growth and considerable culture change. This would not have been possible without the commitment of our volunteers and service users who worked hard on this project and will continue to be involved in the evaluation.”

The Royal Cornwall Hospital Trust are committed to ensuring the NHS Long Term Plan transformation initiatives in maternity are supported, co-designed and implemented to provide the safest and most effective maternity care possible. The introduction of the Personalised Care Plan is one of many projects the maternity team is passionate about.

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