Neonatal services for the future: a manifesto

Influencing services england

Our vision is for every baby born premature or sick to have the best chance of survival and quality of life. We have developed recommendations for the next Government to ensure this vision becomes a reality, which you can read below in our manifesto.

(Last updated: 09/11/23)

Our manifesto at a glance

1) Create a neonatal workforce for the future

Ensure the safety and quality of neonatal services, investment should be made in:

  • Increasing staff numbers for nursing, medical, Allied Health Professional and neonatal community outreach workforce
  • Meeting Qualified in Speciality (QIS) levels set out in national, evidence-based standards

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2) Address inequalities to give every baby the best chance in life

Give every baby in neonatal care equitable care:

  • Appoint a National Neonatal Safety Champion with a clear remit to reduce inequalities in mortality and outcomes
  • Invest in research to identify and interrogate inequity within and between units
  • Commit to clear targets to reduce inequalities in the rates of neonatal death, brain injury and pre-term birth across socio-economic and ethnic groups, and between neonatal units

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3) Support parents to stay at their baby’s side

Support parents to be at their baby’s cot-side and involved in care by introducing:

  • Capital investment for accommodation for parents of sick babies, in the long-term
  • A smaller-scale grants fund to support neonatal units to improve facilities through furniture and equipment

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4) Help families overcome financial barriers to being involved in care

To reduce inequity experienced by families by introducing:

  • A neonatal expenses fund to support parents with travel, childcare and subsistence costs

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5) Provide equal employment support

Review the employment support provided to parents who won’t qualify for Neonatal Care Leave and Pay when introduced, and commit to introducing financial support to help all parents take time away from work, including those:

  • Claiming maternity allowance
  • Claiming Jobseeker’s Allowance or Universal Credit
  • Who are self-employed or classified as workers

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Download the full manifesto