Doctor backs call for reform of maternity care in Greater Manchester

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A top Greater Manchester doctor has backed a national call for reform of maternity care.

Dr Michael Maresh, clinical lead for the Greater Manchester Maternity Network, spoke out after a major report recommended a reorganisation of services.

The Royal College of Obstetrics and Gynaecology called for more midwifery-led units to be set up so women with low-risk pregnancies could be in the sole care of midwives.

It also calls for the number of consultant units be reduced so that senior clinicians are available around the clock.

... “The fact is that there are too many maternity units which means senior doctors’ availability is spread too thinly - reorganisation to provide fewer, specialist units is the only sensible solution.

“... we are in the process of reducing the number of maternity units and ensuring that the new model of care concentrates the expertise of doctors and midwives on eight, better staffed and safer sites.

“By providing a co-located midwife led facility at each of the remaining units, we are able to offer improved choice to the majority of women who experience an uncomplicated birth.”

With good referral systems and collaboration, a model such as this would work very well. The majority of women are healthy and have normal pregnancies and births, if they are given the right support, information and care. The midwifery model of care is a safe and satisfying model of care for healthy women.