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Wednesday, 27 May 2015

Emergency maternity service meeting held for Barrow parents

AN emergency meeting was last night held for parents in Barrow and South Cumbria, following Thursday's announcement that Furness General Hospital's consultant-led maternity service and Special Care Baby Unit are to be temporarily transferred to Lancaster.

Have your say

What happens if there is a serious crisis when mother and baby are being transferred. Babies can arrive very suddenly, and if premature, need specialist help. If a premature baby is born on the M6 to Lancaster/Blackpool/Preston - or where-ever a cot can be found - what happens. The midwife accompanying mother and baby may have to make a decision. Who is saved - mother or baby?
Lets stop all this, a premature baby has more chance of surviving - as does mother - if care and a good medical team is a matter of seconds away.
And just think of the midwife who may have to make that decision - whatever she (or he) does will have consequences...and will they be backed up bu the 'management' at FGH....I don't think so....

Posted by Sonia on 13 February 2013 at 18:16

its not just maternity.
I was unlucky enough to have to visit one ward every day for a number of weeks a while back. The treatment of the patients was shocking to say the least. the matron reported me for complaining instead of sorting his ward out. I am still disgusted with the place and his behaviour. He should be struck off for being incapable. Other visitors said to me that the patient I was visiting would have died if I hadnt strongly complained and that I was very much right to do so.
Maybe the matron can add his voice to the list of apologisers when it all dies down and the place resembles a hospital again, if he is still there that is.

Posted by Better to remain anonymous on 13 February 2013 at 14:36

without FGH my grandson would not of survived, he was born 13 wks early n the staff there were fantastic. He has spent many months in hosp n was transferred bk to fgh last week only to be returned back to Lancaster.This is way out of order what they are doing they have no right to do it.

Posted by concerned nanna on 4 February 2013 at 22:54

Judging by some of the comments on here its seems as though theres a few people who think this is all down to the ones who've lost babies and loved one's,well iv'e got news for all you small minded fools,the blame lies directly at the feet of those who run the hospital trust!There has been serious problems at fgh for a number of years and they have had more than enough chances to put things right,but as always they decided to brush things under the carpet in the hope it goes away.The evidence is there for all to see yet you still point the blame at innocent people,and if we all take the advice of "kira" and freinds then nothing will ever change.So lets do the RIGHT thing and back the campaign for a safer maternaty instead of taking the easy option and blaming the inocents.

Posted by ashamed on 4 February 2013 at 17:02

If I hadn't have had the care and committed staff who looked after me amazingly during my pregnancy I don't know how I would have got through it. The thought of travelling to Lancaster midway through delivery would have been the most traumatising event ever. Its hard enough going into labour with your first without experiencing any complications. Imagine a mother to be be who has been fit and well and then suddenly during labour experiences complications how the hell would she travel to Lancaster to received consultant care? This is ludicrous!

Posted by Sandra Rollinson on 4 February 2013 at 09:21

So if i have got this right. If you go into labour and something goes wrong and you have to have a c section you have to go to lancaster? I am sorry but if the baby has to come out you do it there and then. not after an hour traveling. Surely this could lead to more deaths!!. Just leave it the way it is.

Posted by concern on 3 February 2013 at 18:21

This is ridiculous. I would like to see how they are going to transfer women and babies in critical conditions to Lancaster when A590 is blocked by an accident or road works. My little one was born in 2011 at 33 weeks and 4 days gestation in less than one hour at Furness General Hospital. How would they have transferred us to Lancaster then? By helicopter? Would that been cheaper? Really?
Anyway, we end up spending three weeks in Special Care Baby Unit in Furness General were people like Liz, Tina, Barbara, Ana, Anne, Catherine, Melissa looked after us 24/7 with professionalism, friendliness and dedication.
The only downside in the time spent at SCBU was the ‘chat’ I had with a lady from the ‘office’. Three days into SCBU I was in tears, terrified I would lose my baby and there she was patronising me like I was five years old. By the time she finished I was so angry I could have punch her in the nose. Showed me that they (management) have no idea how things work on the shop floor.
I wish to all mums-to-be in Furness area buckets of luck.

Posted by Angy Morton on 3 February 2013 at 12:07

Horrified by these proposals I have written direct to James Hunt, Secretary of State, because we cannot afford to lose this, or any more services from FGH. I happen to believe that FGH generally provides an excellent service but also recognise the deficiencies in service levels and patient care, in some areas, in the past. However, we cannot allow past events to further damage the quality service that we are entitled to and deserve now.My heart goes out to those who have had problems in the past but that is no reason for us to lose any essential service, however temporary, for any period of time.I hope my letter may be persuasive and it is copied below.RayDear Mr Hunt,I write as a Borough and County Councillor, representing Roosecote Ward in Barrow in Furness. My town suffers geographical isolation whereby increasing inclement weather during winter months makes travel to and from extremely difficult, on occasion, almost impossible.Furness General Hospital serves a population in excess of 100,000, (Furness, Lonsdale and Millom) being the prime provider of medical services in the area. Whilst the provision of specialist medical care in designated facilities may be suitable and beneficial in some areas, because of our location, travel times make this area unsuitable for such an arrangement with the need to ensure that adequate services are retained locally.Services and medical care provided by Furness General are generally recognised as excellent and valued by many people, however failings in our maternity ward have recently caused some considerable concern, including a police investigation into working practices.The University Hospitals of Morecambe Bay NHS Foundation Trust, which runs FGH, has confirmed that Barrow’s consultant-led service and Special Care Baby Unit will be temporarily transferred to the Royal Lancaster Infirmary while bosses solve a staffing crisis. Sir David Henshaw, UHMBT interim chairman, said the trust had seen a “marked increase” in maternity sickness since the escalation of an ongoing police investigation into the deaths of mothers and babies in the Barrow unit.He said: “Over the past eight weeks, we have been filling shifts with the goodwill of existing and agency staff but the situation has now risen to a level where this is not enough to ensure safe staffing levels.” Of further concern is the confirmation that the timescale of this "temporary" arrangement is unknown.Because of distances involved and the need to maintain essential service levels, this decision is ill-conceived and potentially life-threatening.It is however, not only the problems during inclement weather, but the distance between the two hospitals which is, at the very best, an hour and a half journey; most likely two hours for an ambulance.This week, because of roadworks, that journey may have taken up to 3 hours as delays on the only road in and out of Barrow were extensive. What happens at night and weekend, when I understand only two ambulances are in service? With one on a journey to Lancaster, we place at risk others who may need that service urgently, which would then be effectively reduced by 50%.With cuts to benefits, how might families visit relatives in Lancaster (or elsewhere) at times of greatest need. These proposals are therefore ill conceived, potentially dangerous and unwanted.You are already aware of a regional review of vascular services which has seen plans put forward for specialist care to be removed from Furness General Hospital and to be offered at the Cumberland Infirmary in Carlisle, Royal Preston Hospital and Royal Blackburn Hospital; the combination of these proposed changes undermines the ability of Furness General Hospital to provide the level of medical care which is taken for granted elsewhere and which must continue to be delivered locally.I believe it is the role of senior management and the interim Chairman, not to move services elsewhere, but to solve the current problem: that can be done through the deployment of staff from other hospitals within the Trust. However, even that brings with it the problems of travel already identified; I therefore believe that efforts must be made to deal with and resolve the issue of alleged sickness in the maternity ward, for all investigations into past practices to be expedited to allow a return to sensible working practices.There are a great many lessons to be learnt from the unfortunate and tragic consequences of the past; we should by now have dealt with them and be moving forward to the development of a quality service rather than allowing the Trust to abdicate its responsibility by transferring critical and key services elsewhere, (maternity and cardio-vascular) for an undefined temporary period in the case of maternity services.I believe it is incumbent upon you, as Secretary of State for Health to intervene immediately to prevent this proposed change to services and under the circumstances, to ensure that additional funding is...

Posted by Ray Guselli on 3 February 2013 at 11:11

It's not just maternity services that are being moved. I have 3 monthly checks following removal of a tumor and have just found out last week that I will now have to go to Kendal hospital as the service is no longer available at FGH. What will be the next service to be moved? FGH will just be a shell in a few years time.

Posted by Keith on 2 February 2013 at 23:27

I am absolutely disgraced at comments on here blaming particular familieswho lost babies at fgh for the maternity units demise. Get real barrovians, this unit is closing to save money. Mothers have lost babies due to neglect in fgh, why persecute them for their actions. They have lost their most precious things in life and they are campaigning to prevent others from going through what they went to. If fgh isn't safe and giving quality care then I would be more than happy to travel to a different unit until the unit is reorganized if it meant my child being born safe. I have had 3 sections. 2 emergency and 1 planned. If anyone is to blame its the Tory government who are hell bent on destroying the nhs., through cutting staffing levels and cutting budgets. I know, I am an ex nurse who left the nhs because of the finance driven culture. People come down to pounds and pence. Stop blaming grieving families, stand together barrovians and make positive change through collective voice

Posted by fanny anne on 2 February 2013 at 22:45

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