Say YES to maternity at Welwyn Garden City hospital

THIS week sees the start of our battle to ensure births continue at the ‘new QE2’ in WGC.

The Welwyn Hatfield Times has joined forces with MP Grant Shapps, local doctors and midwifery experts, to launch the Say Yes To Maternity Campaign.

And we need everyone in Times Territory to get behind us.

Under current proposals all births in this part of the county will be moved to Stevenage’s Lister Hospital when its new multi-million pound consultant-led maternity unit opens.

But there is growing support for a ground-breaking midwife-led maternity unit at the WGC hospital site.

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A feasibility study into the project has now begun.

It follows the success of Mr Shapps in securing an A&E unit and intermediate care beds for the ‘new QE2’; neither of which had originally been included in health chiefs’ plans.

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Over the coming weeks the WHT will be running a series of articles surrounding the huge benefits a midwife-led maternity unit would bring.

But for it to happen we will have to convince GPs in the borough, who under new Government rulings will have far greater control of health service purse-strings, to back the proposals.

Mr Shapps, whose three children were born at the QE2, said: “The battle is on to convince our GPs that babies should still be born in Welwyn Hatfield in future.

“As I confirmed the other week we now have the chance to include a midwife-led birthing unit at the new QE2 Hospital.

“But this important project can only go ahead with the backing of our doctors. They are now in control of what is included within the new hospital. So this means that every Welwyn Hatfield resident can join the campaign by writing to their local GP and asking them to ‘Say Yes To Maternity’ at the QE2.

“Having finally wrestled control of our QE2 Hospital back into local hands, it would be a real pity if our doctors failed to stand up for what is the clearly settled view of residents.

“When a baby is due we want there to be the option of a birthing unit at our QE2 Hospital. I know that residents will want to help get Welwyn Hatfield doctors behind this potential new unit.”

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