"System/process change complaint"

About: Box Hill Hospital

(as a service user),

At a recent midwife appointment at Box Hill Hospital, I asked for a due date notice and certificate of attendance. I was horrified to learn that midwives are now unable to sign these documents, instead needing a doctors signature. In my opinion, this is a major waste of time and resources when the midwife (with whom I had the appointment!) is in a perfect position of responsibility to sign these documents.

On this instance, the midwife (who was very embarrassed and insulted by the situation), followed by the staff at the front desk, had to run around the unit to find an available doctor to sign the documents. This left me sitting pointlessly waiting for over ten minutes (dare I mention the car was on the meter!). 

I cannot fathom why the decision was made that midwives are no longer able to sign these documents, which are not even medical certificates. These are highly trained individuals in positions of responsibility. Not only does it undermine their position, but such requirements reinforce the archaic, hierarchical health care system that hospitals are meant to be moving away from!

I hope that common sense can prevail in this instance, with the decision/policy/process reversed to ensure staff resources are not wasted and midwives/nurses are not made to feel undermined.  

I would appreciate an explanation for the change (as I'm sure the midwives themselves would, as the staff I have communicated with do not understand why this decision had been made).

*Please note that an email sent to the ward with this complaint was forwarded on to the relevant department heads last week, but I am yet to receive a response or even acknowledgement. 

** In general, the service in the maternity ward is exceptional and the hospital is lucky to have such knowledgeable and personable midwives. 


Response from David Plunkett, Chief Executive, Eastern Health 2 years ago
We have made a change
David Plunkett
Chief Executive,
Eastern Health
Submitted on 16/07/2018 at 07:53
Published on Care Opinion at 09:27

picture of David Plunkett

Dear atlaspk57

Thank you so much for taking the time to share your feedback regarding your recent visit to the antenatal clinic at Box Hill Hospital. Your comment regarding the ability of our midwives to provide due date notices and certificates of attendance has been as a result of an error.

I am pleased to let you know this has been corrected and the midwives will be able to continue to provide this information to women. We are in the process of making sure all are aware of this being reinstated and trust your next experience will be a different one.

Thank you again atlaspk57 for raising this and, as you can see, where things need to be different, changes are made! I hope all goes well with your pregnancy and birth!

Kind regards


  • atlaspk57 thinks this response is helpful
    {{helpful-1}} other {{helpful-1 == 1 ? "person thinks" : "people think"}} so too

Update posted by atlaspk57 (a service user)

Thank you for your response and I'm glad the error has been rectified.

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