Berkshire

Royal Berkshire Hospital diverted 38 women in labour

Royal Berkshire Hospital
Image caption The hospital closed its maternity unit 16 times in 2010

The Royal Berkshire Hospital diverted 38 women in labour to other hospitals last year, a freedom of information request by the BBC show Panorama found.

The maternity unit closed 16 times in 2010, meaning new admissions of women in labour had to be diverted to other hospitals in the area.

Heatherwood and Wexham Park Hospitals Trust has the highest rate of midwife vacancies, the request also revealed.

The Slough trust had vacancy rates of 22%, the Panorama programme found.

Panorama used freedom of information requests to survey maternity services across the UK.

The survey showed the number of births at Royal Berkshire NHS Trust increased from 5,852 in 2007 to 6,045 in 2010.

At Heatherwood and Wexham Park Hospitals NHS Trust, births increased from 5,442 in 2007 to 5,464 in 2010.

Heatherwood and Wexham Park Hospitals Trust and Royal Berkshire NHS Foundation Trust have not yet responded to the findings of the survey.

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