Revealed: the NHS plan to close, consolidate or ‘reshape’ 11 maternity units

Eleven maternity and neonatal units across England face closure, consolidation or ‘reshaping’ under plans to transform obstetrics care in the NHS. i’s investigation into proposals to remodel the health service in order to plug a £22 billion hole by 2021 reveals major changes across England. The affected areas where maternity services are marked to shut or move substantial distances include West, North and East Cumbria, West Yorkshire and Harrogate, Lincolnshire, Leicestershire and Rutland, Birmingham and Solihull, Milton Keynes, Dorset, Coventry and Warwickshire.

A spokesperson for South Yorkshire and Bassetlaw said maternity services will be “reshaped” keeping care and treatment “as close to where [people] live as possible”. Our analysis comes a week after the Royal College of Midwives’ annual report said maternity services across Britain could already reach “crisis point”, as more than a third of British midwives are nearing retirement age. More student midwives need to be trained and start work in the NHS as a “matter of urgency”, the RCM’s State of Maternity Services report said.

Full story in iNews, 15 February 2017