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Mother of New Year's baby says plans to strip Stafford's maternity services are 'disgusting'

By Staffordshire Newsletter  |  Posted: January 08, 2014

By Robin Scott

1451043-HO_SNCL060114New Year baby-03
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A NEW Mother, whose baby boy was one of eight born in Stafford Hospital on New Year’s Day has called plans by administrators to strip out the current service ‘disgusting’.

Louise Nixon, 27, gave birth to Renley James Hudson - named after a character in the hit series Game of Thrones and sharing three initials with both his father and his grandfather – just before 7pm on the first day of the year.

Miss Nixon said the department was ‘very busy’ at 4pm when she had arrived but the care she had received had never faltered.

“All the way through my pregnancy they were spot on with their treatment of me,” she said. “Every step of the way.

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“A couple of weeks before Renley was born I was having lack of movement and they got me straight in, and saw me straight away.

“If they close the service and parents end up having to go to other hospitals, some of them are going to have to go really far.”

“It’s disgusting, I’m not very happy about it at all.”

Louise told the Newsletter, she was thrilled Renley was born in the department in Stafford

“I love that he was born on New Year’s Day really,” she said. “He had to make a grand entrance into the world didn’t he?”

Miss Nixon’s comments came as Staffordshire MPs took their concerns over the proposals to Westminster, debating the plans during a parliamentary debate secured by Stafford MP Jeremy Lefroy.

South Staffordshire MP Gavin Williamson said the idea Stafford would lose its consultant-led maternity unit was ‘deplorable’.

“Most of my constituents and, I am sure, many of my hon. Friend’s, would find it deplorable if Stafford hospital did not have a consultant-led maternity unit,” he said. “The pressure that will place on so many hospitals - Walsall, Manor, New Cross, Queen’s or the University Hospital of North Staffordshire - will be unsustainable.”

Stafford MP Jeremy Lefroy, who led the debate said administrators had proposed replacing the current department with a midwife-led maternity unit dealing with approximately 350 to 400 births a year.

“That is a step forward from the draft report, which proposed no childbirth at all at Stafford,” he said. “However, my constituents and I do not believe that it is sufficient.

“Currently, Stafford sees more than 2,000 births a year and that is likely to rise, with extensive house building, various new business parks being built and the doubling of the size of MOD Stafford, to mention but some developments, resulting, in the coming years - even with a midwife-led unit - probably in some 2,000-plus babies being born in other maternity units, mainly at Stoke and Wolverhampton. “

“The NHS rightly promotes choice for women about where to have their babies and the Prime Minister has spoken out against the trend towards ever larger units,” said Mr Lefroy. “Yet that is precisely what is being proposed here for women who are unable to use a MLU, due to the possibility of complications in childbirth.”

Mr Lefroy proposed instead the current service was continued, networked with Stoke, while the impact of the rising population and birth rate was assessed, relieving pressure on other hospitals nearby and allowing Stafford’s special care baby unit to continue to support the regional intensive care network for babies.

Of the eight babies born in the Stafford’s maternity department on the first day of the year, six were boys, two were girls, two were from Stafford, four were from Cannock and two were from Rugeley, with the first, a baby girl, born at 47 minutes past midnight.

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