Save Paulton Birthing Unit!

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I’m very proud of my roots and of being someone that was born in Paulton Memorial Hospital 27 years ago this month. It instils in me an unequalled sense of identity, an identity based on knowing who I am and where I come from.

A few years ago, my sister took the same decision as our mother and her mother before that, to give birth in a place she felt safe and a place local to where she lived. There was never any desire to be anywhere other than a place surrounded by family and friends. So, it came as a surprise to us last week that the Local Maternity System (LMS) announced its proposal to stop supporting births at both Paulton and Trowbridge.

The claims laid out in the proposals suggest that the decision to do this is based on the fact that less women are choosing to give birth at these locations, due to fears of complications. It’s a shame to see that the LMS has decided to lead with this being the main factor when it is clear that this is all down to money. Consolidating services will only make matters worse for women, who no sooner after giving birth will become just another person taking up a bed. I’ve heard such fantastic and heart-warming stories about the level of care received by new mothers whilst at Paulton that it would be a travesty for this service to not continue.

Crippling austerity and a lack of investment in our LMS has led to local services bearing the brunt of cuts and privatisation that started under Cameron and Osbourne but continues under our current Government. May and Hammond might feel it is necessary to go galivanting around the right-wing media declaring that austerity is over, but I beg to differ. Our NHS is becoming thin, stretched by crippling austerity like butter scraped over too much bread. A lack of spending on the NHS is still eating away and we can see this so evidently in the latest proposals.

However, we must remember that this is just a proposal. The LMS have said they are very keen to hear from us, so let’s get our voices heard! Silence could risk a snowball effect to more and more cuts to local services at Paulton Memorial Hospital.

Please sign to oppose these changes to Paulton's maternity services.