MP: move surgery to cope with maternity - The Worcester Observer

MP: move surgery to cope with maternity

Worcester Editorial 4th Nov, 2015 Updated: 19th Oct, 2016   0

WORCESTER’S MP has called for elective surgery to be moved from the Worcestershire Royal to the Alexandra Hospital ahead of the proposed closure of the Redditch hospital’s maternity unit.

Robin Walker made the plea ahead of all births and neonatal services at the Alex being moved to the Worcestershire Royal from midday tomorrow (Thursday).

Worcestershire Acute Hospitals NHS Trust revealed the bombshell on Friday (October 30) and said it did not have enough staff at the Alex to operate the unit safely and the situation had now become critical. However the Trust maintains this will only be a temporary measure

Despite the assurances, Mr Walker said he would be happy to support elective surgery moving from the Royal to the Alex in order to free up space for maternity, neonatal and emergency services

“I think the most important thing is safety and therefore it has to be right that if clinicians have decided that the service at the Alex is unsafe the move is made to Worcester where it is safe,” he said.

“I do understand some of the concerns of Redditch residents about extra travel time and I would hope that South Warwickshire and Birmingham can help to pick up some of the cases that might otherwise come here.

“Worcester has an excellent maternity and neonatal service and I have had reassurances that the staffing is sufficient to cover the extra demand.

“We also have the brand new state of the art midwife led unit which offers extra choice to expectant mothers,” he added.

However one mum to be who contacted the Observer but wished to remain anonymous said the news had left her worried about the care she would receive in labour.

“I am due in five weeks with my first baby, I was always going to the Worcestershire Royal but I’m worried now about the pressure on the midwives there,” she said.

“They are going to be rushed off their feet coping with mums from Worcester and Droitwich and now Bromsgrove and Redditch too.”

“I’m really worried now when I am supposed to be relaxed.”

Health chiefs have defended the move and Mari Gray, interim chief nursing officer, said: “Despite all efforts we are unable to safely cover all of our neonatal rotas, especially at weekends.

“From Thursday we cannot consistently cover the evening shifts with the numbers and seniority of experienced staff needed to provide the standard of care we want.

“This is a temporary change. We will only reopen the service when we are confident that we have all of the senior qualified staff in place to consistently cover all of the rotas.

“We will be looking to review this position in February next year,” she added.

* What do you think? E-mail [email protected] with your views.

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