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Northampton: Maternity unit needs 37 more midwives

A criticised maternity service needs 37 more midwives, about a fifth of its total midwifery workforce.

The Care Quality Commission has said Northampton General Hospital did not always have enough qualified and experienced staff to keep women safe from avoidable harm.

Figures obtained by the BBC show that 49 serious incidents have occurred in its maternity services in four years.

The hospital said it had undertaken "a lot of work" in the past 18 months and a recruitment process was under way.

According to a Freedom of Information Act response, between November 2018 and November 2022, the hospital had 278 serious incidents, with the highest level coming across maternity services, including gynaecology and obstetrics.

There are currently 37 vacancies for midwives but the trust said it manages staffing levels "closely and ensure that all shifts are covered by bank or midwives working altered shift patterns, to ensure that we are able to provide a safe maternity experience".

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Source: BBC News, 27 February 2023


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