Ensuring the delivery of 24/7 consultant led maternity services at West Cumberland Hospital was raised in the chamber today by Copeland’s MP.
Today, in Oral Questions to the Prime Minister, Trudy commended West Cumberland Hospital’s ‘outstanding staff dedication’ ‘ambitious leadership’ and her ‘passionate community’ before asking the Prime Minister if 24/7 consultant led maternity services will be secured when the department is fully staffed.
Mrs Harrison, said: “Outstanding staff dedication, the passion of my community and ambitious leadership have secured huge Government investment and nationally celebrated excellence.
“Will my Right Honourable Friend, the Prime Minister agree with me when the department is fully staffed 24/7 consultant led maternity shall be secured.”
In response to Mrs Harrison, the Prime Minister, said: “I know this is an issue which she has campaigned strong and hard for in the interests of her constituents and the NHS in North Cumbria is working on plans for considerable investment as she says in local health services including the completion of the new build of the West Cumberland Hospital and the creation of an academic campus and it is committed to doing all it can to maintain those consultant led maternity services at West Cumberland Hospital.
“Patient safety is the key, that’s the priority but the NHS is doing all it can to ensure a safe and sustainable service can be provided to my right honourable friend’s constituents and others.”
It comes as Health Secretary, Jeremy Hunt announced more than 3,000 places on midwifery training courses are to be created over the next four years in England as part of plans to meet NHS staffing demands.
The government has announced a 25 per cent boost in training places, which it said amounted to the “largest ever” increase in NHS midwives and maternity staff.
An additional 650 will be trained next year, followed by an extra 1,000 in each of the subsequent years.
It is hoped the measures will give the majority of women care from the same team through their pregnancy, labour and birth by 2021.
Midwives were last week among one million NHS staff awarded a pay rise of between 6.5 and 29 per cent.
A newly qualified midwife will now start on a salary of £24,907 by 2020/21 – a 12.6 per cent rise.
In January, North Cumbria University Hospital’s Trust announced the recruitment of 20 trainee nursing associates and 20 nursing degree apprentices as well as 10 trainee nursing associates and 10 nursing degree apprentices at Cumbria Partnership NHS Foundation Trust (CPFT)