With just a month to go, the Shaping Health for Mid Kesteven consultation which calls for Grantham Hospital to lose its maternity unit has so far had more than 400 responses.
Grantham Hospital’s Outpatient Department is hosting the seventh public information event on Tuesday 22 January between 11am and 4pm. Members of the Shaping Health team will be at the event to answer questions.
Chair of the South West Lincolnshire Clinical Commissioning Group, Dr Richard Gent said: “As part of this consultation we are not only consulting on two proposals to change children’s and midwifery services, but we are also setting out a number of improvements we are making which Grantham Hospital will benefit and thrive from.
“We want to keep the 24-hour A&E unit open and develop it into an A&E Care Centre with two new children’s bays and bring together the best of A&E consultants and Out of Hours doctors, supported by mental health, social care and end of life care teams.
“Also, we know that the Midwife Led Birthing Unit is highly regarded by local women and the choice of a midwife led birth is important. Unfortunately the unit is only supporting 100 births a year, that’s less than two births a week.
“As such, we are planning to invest in developing the same level of care at a larger hospital with an Obstetric Unit, effectively relocating the Midwife Unit to a hospital where a team of specialists are on hand, should any complications arise.
“All antenatal and postnatal care will remain at Grantham Hospital and there will be no changes to the home birth service.”
Currently 2,370 women a year attend Grantham Hospital for their antenatal and postnatal care but the vast majority opt to give birth at other hospitals where there is:
- Direct access to obstetricians, anaesthetists and neonatologists,
- Access to other specialist services such as epidurals for pain relief,
- A specialist care baby unit if there are any problems.
None of which they can currently get at the Midwifery Led Birthing Unit at Grantham Hospital.
For more on the plans for Grantham Hospital see tomorrow’s Grantham Journal.