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Keep Mum: 'The status quo is unsafe and unsustainable'


By Ewan Malcolm

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LOCAL campaign group Keep MUM have called for immediate action to help pregnant women in Moray following the release of an independent report into maternity services at Dr Gray's Hospital.

Kirsty Watson, a spokesperson for Keep MUM, welcomed Humza Yousaf's statement earlier this week but reaffirmed the need for immediate action. Picture: Daniel Forsyth.
Kirsty Watson, a spokesperson for Keep MUM, welcomed Humza Yousaf's statement earlier this week but reaffirmed the need for immediate action. Picture: Daniel Forsyth.

The report makes several short term recommendations to help ensure more women give birth in Moray.

Health Secretary, Humza Yousaf, said that the Scottish Government "will not waste any time" in working to restore a consultant led maternity unit in a statement made on Tuesday. Mr Yousaf also added that he would be travelling to Moray on December 20 to meet with the local community including Keep MUM to discuss the next steps.

Kirsty Watson, a spokesperson for Keep MUM, said: "We welcome the Health Secretary's comments to the Scottish Parliament and his stated commitment to restoring a consultant maternity service. We look forward to meeting the Health Secretary when he visits Moray."

She added: "That being the case, we are looking for rapid improvements to the delivery of Moray maternity services so that women who are currently pregnant or planning to have a baby actually benefit from the work of the independent review.

"As the situation has not changed now, and is unlikely to do so for some time, anxiety continues for Moray women and their families. There may be light at the end of the tunnel but this is some time away.

"If NHS Grampian had planned properly and committed to Dr Gray's, we feel this dangerous situation could have been avoided."

The report itself said that a consultant led service at Dr Gray's is unlikely to be deliverable within a reasonable time scale. However, Keep MUM were pleased to see support for Model 5. That could see 70 per cent of Moray babies delivered in Elgin although concerns remain over plans to transfer Moray women to Raigmore Hospital in Inverness.

Ms Watson said: "We do not believe that there is sufficient capacity or staffing to take patients from Moray.

"Furthermore, we are not convinced that frontline staff have been properly consulted about this option. Moray can't wait for years for Raigmore to be extended.

"We hope that Humza Yousaf will have the opportunity to speak to the hands-on clinicians in Dr Gray's and Raigmore in addition to meeting managers. We feel their input is key."


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