Pre-tea discussions

Tea at the House of Lords is a treat any day of the week and to spend it in the company of our gracious host, Lord Turnberg and the brilliant representatives from all of Baby Buddy’s endorsing organisations but one (RCM, RCOG, CPHVA; RCPCH, RCSLT, RCPSYCH,  as well as UNICEF and PHE) was a double treat.

Battling traffic, bus delays and a protest in and around Westminster meant we were off to a slightly later start for our pre-tea discussion and update about Baby Buddy – reflecting on Baby Buddy’s evaluated successes as an intervention - offering support and encouraging self-efficacy - and as a communication tool for professionals, for example, when needing to communicate issues with parents that might be sensitive or challenging. Baby Buddy also helps support continuity of care by making it incredibly easy for mothers to keep a record of their progress, concerns and milestones in between appointments and to share with their midwives or health visitors in their next appointment.  This allows them to run through everything together - really enhancing the parent-professional partnership.

Streamlined review process for new content

The discussion presented the perfect opportunity to talk about some new content in the pipeline, a proposal for greater streamlining of the review process, as well as updating the process for responding to changes in policy and guidelines and ensuring these changes are reflected in the content as soon as possible. It was hugely valuable to get everyone’s feedback and thoughts about the most effective and time efficient way forward.

We were encouraged and inspired by the palpable energy and the commitment to continued support for Baby Buddy whose very existence as a trusted, evidence based app,  is dependent on the regular quality-assurance offered by our board of experts. 

Introducing our "voice" of Baby Buddy

We were delighted to finally be able to introduce everyone to Jenny MacLeish as the “voice” of Baby Buddy since its launch in 2014. Jenny’s enviable calm, experience and profound understanding of key issues, and a real sense of how to strike the delicate balance between keeping language accessible without sounding patronising and maintaining a tonal warmth that people of all ages and backgrounds can relate to, was immediately apparent. As the Strategic Co-ordinator of the National Teenage Pregnancy Midwifery Network, Jenny is particularly well placed to understand the sensitivities and needs of one of our main audiences. She is skilled at taking on board comments from all board members and weaving them into a cohesive piece of engaging information, ensuring that nothing is lost in translation and that there is no dilution of key messages.

Food for thought

The discussion went onto briefly address other issues, for example the Editorial Board’s policy around certain types of information that have the potential to be misunderstood and could therefore become problematic ….  There was plenty of food for thought for another occasion as the talk wrapped up promptly at five and we made our way to the delicious tea and my personal favourite, scones, with jam and clotted cream. Thanks to my table buddies Lord Turnberg, Maggie Pringle (UNICEF), Dr Getrude Seneviratne (RCPSYCH) and Alison Baum. And thank you to Obi Amadi (CPHVA), Karen Pinder (PHE); Janet Fyle (RCM), Dr Anwen Gorry (RCOG); Mr Amit Kulkarni (RCSLT), Zoe Darwin (SRIP) for so generously giving us your time and expertise. Representing Best Beginnings, apart from myself,  was - Alison Baum, Shabira Papain and Jenny McLeish.