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'Broken contract' between maternity unit and patients

Twelve deaths over eight years, all of which could have been prevented. That's the conclusion of an independent inquiry set-up to look into the failures at a maternity unit in South Cumbria.

Dr Bill Kirkup, who chaired the investigation into Furness General Hospital said a "lethal mix" of problems at a "seriously dysfunctional" maternity unit led to the unnecessary deaths of 11 babies and one mother.

The Health Secretary, Jeremy Hunt, apologised to the families of the victims today - before describing the unit as a "second Mid Staffs".

Our reporter Elaine Willcox was at today's inquiry:

Well earlier Elaine spoke to the new Medical Director at Morecambe Bay Trust, Dr David Walker.

He apologised to the families of the victims and promised wholesale reviews from the board to the ward.

Memorial cross gets approval.....for now

A widower from Workington has been told his large public memorial to his late wife can stay, for now. Allerdale Borough Council today granted retrospective planning permission for the 9 foot cross which overlooks the town.

But Peter Nelson hasn't got approval yet from the landowners - Cumbria County Council, and ultimately it has the final say and could order him to take it down.

Kate Walby reports.

The blues relegation battle

Carlisle United face Cheltenham tonight in a crucial match in their relegation battle.

The blues fell into the drop zone after their fourth successive defeat against Southend on Saturday. Now they have a chance to pull themselves out of it against another side struggling at the wrong end of the table.

Ryan Dollard has been at Brunton Park ahead of the big game.


NFU boss backs milk crisis

The new president of the national farmers union of Scotland was in Dumfries and Galloway today to give assurances that the dairy industry will be a key concern for him.

Allan Bowie was sworn into his new post last month, and now he's looking forward to giving farmers in our region the best deal they can for selling their milk.

Our reporter Fiona McIlwraith went along to meet him.

Borders General misses A&E waiting time targets

Credit: ITV Border News

The latest figures for waiting times in Accident and Emergency show that the Borders General Hospital has missed the national targets.

More than one in ten patients who went to the hospital in the week ending the 22nd of February had to wait longer than four hours for treatment. The government wants 95% of patients to be seen in that time. The Borders General managed 89.5%. The figures were announced by the Scottish Health Secretary.

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