Maternity services continuing to improve

  • Jonathan Coleman

Health Minister Jonathan Coleman says the National Maternity Monitoring Group (NMMG) 2015 Annual Report shows the quality of maternity services in New Zealand is continuing to improve.

“It’s important that new mothers and babies receive high quality care across New Zealand,” says Dr Coleman.

“The NMMG Annual Report shows there’s a growing momentum within the maternity professions to further develop quality improvement initiatives.

“The number of pregnant women enrolling with a lead maternity carer in their first trimester is continuing to increase, meaning more women are receiving appropriate maternity services from the beginning.

“Access to ultrasounds has also improved with more women now getting scans at the critical points of their baby’s development.”

The report also outlines the NMMG’s key focus areas for 2016, including:

  • Improving access to maternity services for rural women;
  • Continuing to develop clinical guidelines so women and their babies receive consistent care no matter where they live;
  • And improving pathways to mental health and alcohol and drug addiction services during pregnancy.

These improvements are being supported by the extra $103 million over four years invested in Budget 2012 to further develop maternity services.

The NMMG was established in 2012 by the Ministry of Health to oversee the maternity system and implementation of the 2011 Maternity Standards. The standards aim to provide safe, high quality services for all mothers and their babies through the journey from pregnancy and birth to postnatal care.

A copy of the report is available at