Evaluation of the NHS Race and Health Observatory /Institute for Healthcare Improvement Maternal and Neonatal Learning and Action Network Programme

In January 2024, the NHS Race and Health Observatory launched a landmark pilot Learning and Action Network (LAN) to address stark disparities in maternal, perinatal and neonatal health outcomes. Large-scale maternity and neonatal improvement programmes in England have yet to effectively address the persistent ethnic inequalities in maternal and neonatal health. Maternal mortality is almost three and two times that of White women, for Black and Asian women respectively. Black babies are twice as likely as White babies to be stillborn.

The programme is jointly resourced by the Observatory, Institute for Healthcare Improvement (IHI) and supported by The Health Foundation. The 10 participating teams are working at system level, across eight Integrated Care Systems (ICSs) in four regions. Each team is utilising a Quality Improvement approach with embedded anti-racism principles to: reduce clinically avoidable severe maternal morbidity, perinatal mortality and neonatal morbidity while improving the experience of care for pregnant women and people from Black, Asian and minority ethnic groups.

The LAN will initially run for 14 months.  This invitation to tender calls for an evaluation partner to explore the feasibility and acceptability of an anti-racism focused improvement approach to address ethnic inequalities in maternal and neonatal health.

To inform subsequent phases of the programme, the evaluation partner will work with the Observatory and IHI to develop an evaluation protocol, to identify contextual and implementation factors that impact the effectiveness and scalability of interventions developed through the LAN’s anti-racism focused approach. Broad engagement with invested stakeholders from Black, Asian and other minority ethnic backgrounds is integral for this evaluation to provide further insights and authenticity.

More information can be found in the Invitation to Tender PDF document here.

We welcome submissions from all interested organisations. Tender submissions should be made by Friday, 16 August 2024.