Figures uncovered today show a significant increase in the number of all hospital births and caesarean deliveries in North Wales.
The information revealed by Darren Millar, Assembly Member for Clwyd West, shows an increase in all hospital births and caesarean deliveries in North Wales in the last five years, underlining the importance of local, consultant-led maternity services in the area.
The Betsi Cadwaldr University Health Board is currently undertaking a review into maternity and neonatal services in North Wales and health chiefs are refusing to rule out the possibility that consultant-led maternity services could be axed at one or more of the three main hospital sites with existing services replaced by a midwife led unit. There are currently consultant-led services at Ysbyty Gwynedd, Bangor, Ysbyty Glan Clwyd and Wrexham Maelor Hospital.
Commenting on the figures, Darren Millar said:
‘There has been a strong public backlash at suggestions that maternity services in North Wales could be downgraded.
'Over 2000 people have signed a petition to save maternity services at Ysbyty Glan Clwyd and online campaigns have attracted nearly 16,000 supporters.
‘These figures show that despite the number of special care baby beds at each of the three hospitals in North Wales remaining constant over the last five years, the number of all deliveries has increased.
'They also demonstrate that the number of caesarean deliveries at all three hospitals has risen significantly.
‘At a recent public meeting the Health Board were unable to rule out the possibility that consultant led maternity services at Glan Clwyd and other District General Hospitals could be downgraded to midwifery led maternity units.
'These figures prove that consultant-led maternity services at Glan Clwyd and other hospitals in North Wales’ must be retained.’
The Welsh Assembly Government publishes information about NHS hospital beds and the method of delivery for hospital births on their StatsWales website.
Further information on the figures can also be found here.