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'Desperate' shortage of midwives at hospital

A desperate shortage of midwives - at one of our leading hospitals - is likely to continue until March next year at the earliest.

Fifteen women were turned away from Reading's Royal Berkshire Hospital in one month - because there weren't enough staff. Despite a recruitment drive, the hospital says it hasn't been able to fill the vacancies.


Sussex maternity plans 'absolutely outrageous'

There are renewed calls for health bosses to re-consider a decision to downgrade a maternity department in Sussex. The unit at Eastbourne District Hospital will be shut temporarily and replaced with a birth centre.

Campaigners fear it could become permanent. It means some expectant mothers will have to travel to the Conquest in Hastings to give birth.

The Lib Dem MP for Eastbourne, Stephen Lloyd told the house of Commons the plans were 'absolutely outrageous'

Why Portsmouth's a good place to have a baby

Maternity services at Portsmouth Hospitals NHS Trust have been praised in a new report.

In June 2012 NHS South of England coordinated a survey of mothers’ experience of their care across all 37 NHS Trusts.

Many said that their experience at Portsmouth Hospitals NHS Trust was a good one, especially when it came to one to one care.

The results show that we are performing well and within the expected outcomes for all areas of the survey. One result was significantly above the South of England average with regards to one to one care in labour, where the woman and partner reported that they were not left alone by midwives or doctors at a time when it worried them. This is one of priorities within the current development programme, ‘Nurture’ which is very encouraging.”

– Gill Walton, Director of Midwifery

Portsmouth Hospitals NHS Trust is one of the largest acute hospital trusts in the country. Most services are provided at Queen Alexandra Hospital. The Trust handles around 130,000 Emergency Department admissions a year and has the busiest maternity department on the South Coast.

Revamp for maternity unit where Duchess was born

It's one of the busiest maternity units in the South - delivering up to six thousand babies a year. And, today, the new midwife-led centre at the Royal Berkshire Hospital was officially opened.

More than a million pounds has been spent converting an existing ward on the top floor of the maternity block where the Duchess of Cambridge was born. Kerry Swain spent the day meeting some VERY new arrivals.