Happy birthday NHS, 70 today! Along with no doubt far more people than any of us realise, I would probably not be here today to wish you a happy birthday without your care when I needed it.

I think people know that I am a great supporter of the NHS. I was thrilled to receive three very special 10p coins from the #NHS70 team and to make this little video.

So it was always on the cards that I would be doing something special and NHS-related on 5 July 2018, and I was delighted to be invited to speak at the national perinatal mental health network event in London! Here are our slides:

We were invited to update people on the fabulous progress we are making with the #MindNBody #WhoseShoes project, the third in our series of ‘major’ #MatExp projects (with lots of mini projects running alongside) . I introduced the session, talking about the background to #MatExp, the work we have done so far and the impact that it is having in over 50 materniy units across the country. And because it is a collaborative project, the presentation was of course collaborative. I handed over to leaders from each of the three regions funding the project: Louise Nunn from London, Kirstie McKenzie-McHarg from the West Midlands and Clair Bullock from the South West. Together we are crowdsourcing new Whose Shoes? scenarios and poems around a holistic approach to perinatal mental health care. You can read more about #MindNBody here.

The timing was perfect. We had just finished our three regional events (London, Birmingham and Exeter) in which we tested the draft resources with very diverse audiences and filled lots of gaps. The scope of the project is extremely broad: right through from prevention (so important!) to serious mental health issues; inner city problems through to what it feels like to be isolated in a remote rural community.

The new resources will be made available immediately to all the trusts who were using Whose Shoes? as a quality improvement approach when we started the project. Many are watching closely and very keen to set up workshops to get more people talking about perinatal mental health issues and, most importantly, to take action to make things better for women and families. Everything we do is very action focused (have you heard of #JFDI?) and this will be no different.

It was great to meet so many passionate people in London. Please follow and join the powerful #MatEx#MindNBody hashtags … and carry on enjoying the sunshine!

NHS Exo, main stage 2017!
Holistic care
Gill, Flo, Louise and Louise!
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