This is a report on NHS-funded maternity services in England for March 2016, using data submitted to the Maternity Services Data Set (MSDS).
The MSDS is a patient-level data set that captures key information at each stage of the maternity service care pathway in NHS-funded maternity services, such as those maternity services provided by GP practices and hospitals. The data collected includes mother's demographics, booking appointments, admissions and re-admissions, screening tests, labour and delivery along with baby's demographics, diagnoses and screening tests.
The MSDS has been developed to help achieve better outcomes of care for mothers, babies and children. As a 'secondary uses' data set, it re-uses clinical and operational data for purposes other than direct patient care, such as commissioning, clinical audit, research, service planning and performance management at both local and national level. It will provide comparative, mother and child-centric data that will be used to improve clinical quality and service efficiency, and to commission services in a way that improves health and reduces inequalities.
As part of this month's publication we are also publishing a special feature presenting further analysis of data submitted to the MSDS pertaining to the birth episodes of pregnant women and comparing this data to similar data reported in Hospital Episode Statistics (HES) during the same period.
These statistics are classified as experimental and should be used with caution. Experimental statistics are new official statistics undergoing evaluation. They are published in order to involve users and stakeholders in their development and as a means to build in quality at an early stage. More information about experimental statistics can be found on the UK Statistics Authority website.