Staffing pressures force Watford hospital’s private maternity unit to close


Letters - Credit: Archant

Staffing pressures at Watford General Hospital have led to the closure of a private maternity unit, it was revealed today (Thursday).

West Herts Hospital Trust last week announced the closure of the private obstetric service following a visit to the hospital from the Care Quality Commission (CQC).

In a statement sent to the Herts Advertiser, chief nurse Tracey Carter said that the CQC raised concerns about understaffing of permanent midwives, which are being substituted by temporary staff.

She added: “This is why we took the decision to suspend our small private obstetric service.

“We wanted to be able to concentrate on providing excellent care to women giving birth on the NHS at Watford Hospital.”

Twenty seven woman who were to give birth at the private facility after May 1 have been left with an uncertainty about where to deliver.

They will either have to use NHS facilities or move to another hospital for private treatment.

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The change to the obstetric service does not affect mothers to be who wish to pre-book a single room in the Knutsford suite to stay in following the birth of their baby.