Sands are delighted to announce three hospitals have been chosen to receive the Bereavement in Maternity Care in Scotland Improvement Award.

Maternity Units at the three hospitals will each receive £5,000 to improve the care they offer to parents whose baby has died.

The purpose of the Awards is to provide Health Boards with incentive and assistance to develop their bereavement care. The overall aim of the Awards is to improve the bereavement care provided to families who experience loss during pregnancy, birth or the postnatal period.

The winners of the Awards are:

NHS Ayrshire and Arran (Crosshouse Hospital)

The Ayrshire Maternity Unit were successful due to their pledge to develop a number of key areas that will benefit parents whose baby has died. 

They’ll ensure that reliable processes are put in place so that parents are provided with bereavement support following discharge from hospital, as well as offering liaison support to parents after the death of a baby.


NHS Lanarkshire (Wishaw General Hospital)

NHS Lanarkshire’s Wishaw General Hospital Bereavement team have a forward looking plan. This aims to improve the bereavement care already provided by the hospital in two ways:

First, by maximising the opportunities parents have to create memories after the death of a baby, ensuring a consistent approach.

Second, to review what happens after a mother is discharged and to create standardised improvements to ensure that the appropriate support can be provided.


NHS Western Isles (Western Isles Hospital, Stornoway)

The Maternity Ward at the NHS Western Isles will ensure that women across the Western Isles receive consistent, high quality care.

Specifically, provision of care will be developed on smaller islands who do not have a resident support worker, such as Uist and Barra. Training will also be given to maternity staff on helping parents create memories following the death of a baby. 

Support for parents after they leave maternity care will also be formalised and embedded into practice.


About the Bereavement in Maternity Care in Scotland Improvement Award.

The overall aim of the award is to provide health boards with incentive and assistance to develop their bereavement care. Applicants were asked to identify local projects that could include:

  • Provision of training for midwifery, neonatal and obstetric staff on bereavement and care of bereaved families. Money to be used to pay professional trainers to attend, release and backfill staff to attend.
  • Provision of ‘train the trainer’ events to ensure that there are enough staff within their service to provide ongoing regular updates for staff on bereavement care.
  • Development and production of new resources for staff and/or families. This may include new leaflets or guidance.
  • Development of a midwife/ nurse/ counsellor post to provide bereavement support to families.
  • Development of a midwife/ nurse post to coordinate and develop bereavement care and staff training on bereavement.
  • Other locally identified improvement needs.

Find out more about the award.