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Turner demands improvement in childbirth care

Media statement
For immediate release
Tuesday, 4 December 2007

Turner demands ‘massive’ improvement in childbirth care

UnitedFuture deputy leader Judy Turner is calling on the Government and district health boards to stop placing Kiwi newlyborns at risk ‘merely to save a few dollars’.

“It’s utterly disgraceful that we have stories like that on the frontpage of the DominionPost today detailing the death of a baby after the mother was shoved out of the birthing unit prematurely.

“We used to get it right. When I gave birth to my first child 26+ years ago, we packed our nighties and dressing gowns and waltzed around the ward looking like patients – which was ridiculous.

“Nonetheless, in the midst of all that, we learnt how to breastfeed and care for our small babies with great support from staff.

“With timeout from the pressures of home, we could focus on our wee tot and kickstart the bonding and attachment process without the demands of family or the pressure of isolation.

“But it’s different today, with many young New Zealand mums telling me they are constantly pressured by staff to leave the birthing unit.

“Just this weekend, a young mother told me that for the three days she was in hospital, she was approached by staff at every shift change asking her if she wanted to leave.

“It’s not good enough and it’s got to stop,” said Mrs Turner.


ENDS

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