Publish date: 12 December 2023

Everyone is invited to share their views on the future of maternity, neonatal and children’s surgical services in North Central London as a 14-week public consultation launches today.

The consultation is being jointly run by North Central London Integrated Care Board, on behalf of the Integrated Care system, with NHS England as commissioner of some specialised services for neonatal and children’s surgical care.

Across the NCL Integrated Care System we have spent several years working on the proposals that are being put forward for public consultation. As a system, we have reached consensus on proposals that respond to a compelling case for change. Together with senior clinical leaders, including doctors, midwives, nurses and other healthcare professionals, we have developed proposals that we feel would be sustainable in the long term and improve the experience, access and outcomes for both patients and staff.

We want to hear from patients, staff, residents and those using our services from NCL and beyond, alongside community, voluntary and professional groups about our proposals for changes to maternity and neonatal care and children’s surgery in NCL.

Frontline NHS staff work incredibly hard to provide the best possible services, but the changing needs and demands of local people, caused by falling birth rates and increasingly complex care needed by people using services, mean services aren’t always set up in the right way. There are also challenges including the high number of staffing vacancies in some professions, and services not always being able to meet best practice standards.

For children’s surgery, there is variation in access with some babies and young children getting transferred several times before getting the care they need and too many children are waiting too long for surgical care.

The proposals include a reduction in the number of hospital sites in NCL delivering maternity and neonatal care from five to four, and the possible closure of the birthing suites at the Edgware Birth Centre. These changes would create more resilient services, with co-located midwifery and obstetrics-led units with neonatal units able to look after premature or unwell babies, alongside a homebirth offer for all boroughs.

For children’s surgery, proposals include creating two ‘centres of expertise’ at Great Ormond Street Hospital and UCLH which would mean quicker and better quality of care for babies and small children who need operations.

To find out more about the proposals and take part in the consultation visit or get in touch via: