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Maternity Beds, Middlesex

Volume 649: debated on Monday 13 November 1961

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asked the Minister of Health what immediate action he proposes to take with regard to the shortage of maternity beds in hospitals in Middlesex.

Arrangements have been made for better selection of hospital cases and reciprocal help between hospitals.

Is the hon. Lady aware that it is still impossible for many mothers having their first babies—some of them with bad home conditions or on medical grounds—to get into hospital and that at Perivale hospital, if admitted, they are liable to be sent home after 48 hours?

I am aware that there is great pressure for maternity beds in Middlesex, but 74 per cent. of the confinements take place in hospital, which is well above the Cranbrook recommendations. We hope that with better selection of cases for admission to hospital, some of the pressure will be relieved.