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Concern over neonatal care

10th February 2012

Concerns have been raised over the quality of neonatal care in Wales.

Premature Baby

A report from special care baby charity Bliss has told a Welsh assembly inquiry into neonatal hospital services about the need for improvements in the care of premature and sick babies.

It raises particular concerns over access to consultant and middle grade doctors in Wales, with three neonatal units in north Wales run by the Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board an area where there are fears.

Bliss has “serious concern” about intensive care for babies at Ysbyty Glan Clwyd, Bodelwyddan, Denbighshire, and Wrexham Maelor Hospital, saying “neither of these units are even approaching compliance with the All Wales Neonatal Standards on medical staffing of a unit providing this level of care.”

The charity acknowledges that the health board has already launched a review of maternity, neonatal and paediatric services in north Wales to seek to address issues.

But it adds: “We believe that despite the best efforts of staff currently involved in the care of babies in north Wales, there are serious safety implications that the health board must address without delay.”

Staff shortages and training were also concerns raised to the inquiry.

Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board said the issues raised are being considered by the review of maternity and child health services across north Wales.

The Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health Wales and the Royal College of Nursing have also submitted concerns to the inquiry.

Welsh Health minister Lesley Griffiths said staff shortfalls were being addressed by local health boards.

 

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