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Scottish Labour Party Debate: Protecting Specialist Neonatal Services in Lanarkshire

Wednesday 20 September 2023 3:57 PM


Jackie Baillie S6M-10497 That the Parliament is concerned by the Scottish Government’s decision to downgrade the award-winning neonatal services in University Hospital Wishaw, which will result in newborn babies who require specialist care being transferred to one of three specialist intensive care neonatal units across Scotland; recognises that many families across Lanarkshire have had their newborn babies cared for in this Neonatal Intensive Care unit, and that they are deeply upset by this decision to withdraw critical services and expertise from local communities, and calls on the Scottish Government to reverse its decision. Jenni Minto S6M-10497.2 As an amendment to motion S6M-10497 in the name of Jackie Baillie (Protecting Specialist Neonatal Services in Lanarkshire), leave out from “is concerned” to end and insert “believes that it is vital that the smallest and sickest babies born in Scotland receive the best and safest care possible to improve their life chances; notes evidence from expert clinicians that care for babies at highest risk is safest in units that treat a higher number of patients; agrees that parents would expect the Scottish Government to act on such evidence in the very best interests of their babies; welcomes the new model of neonatal intensive care, as recommended by The Best Start report, which was led by expert NHS clinicians and service user representatives, that delivers this change; notes that local neonatal units will continue to offer care to the vast majority of babies who need it, and that no neonatal units will close as part of the new model; further notes that all families who have a baby in neonatal care can access the Young Patients Family Fund, which provides support for costs of travel, food and accommodation; acknowledges the commitment of all neonatal staff across Scotland, and congratulates the Wishaw neonatal team on being named UK neonatal team of the year in 2023.” Sandesh Gulhane S6M-10497.1 As an amendment to motion S6M-10497 in the name of Jackie Baillie (Protecting Specialist Neonatal Services in Lanarkshire), insert at end “, and understands that declining maternity services is not being experienced exclusively in Lanarkshire, with Dr Gray’s Hospital in Elgin still waiting for its consultant-led maternity services to be restored, five years after they were temporarily downgraded, and with maternity services at Caithness having been permanently downgraded, leading to expectant mothers being forced to travel vast distances just to give birth.”

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