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Maternity Services (Gloucestershire)

Volume 569: debated on Tuesday 22 October 2013

2. What assessment he has made of the adequacy of provision of maternity services in Gloucestershire. (900584)

On 12 November last year, I announced the allocation of a £25 million capital fund to the NHS to improve maternity services across the country, and that has supported improvements in 110 maternity care settings. I am pleased to say that, of that figure, Gloucestershire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust was awarded £150,000 to refurbish the Stroud maternity unit.

I thank the Minister for that encouraging answer. We now have 1,400 new midwives since 2010. Coupled with the very welcome recent investment in Stroud maternity unit, does he agree that this represents a real choice for expectant mothers and an excellent maternity service in general?

My hon. Friend is absolutely right to highlight the fact that when we came into Government there was a historical shortage of investment in maternity and midwifery care. We now have almost 1,400 more midwives in the work force, training commissions are being maintained at a record high, and we are continuing to invest in on-the-ground capital projects to support the birthing environment for women.