'Staff shortages' hamper service at £1.3m birthing unit
Birth rates at the Royal Berkshire hospital's £1.3m birthing suite are falling below target due to staffing shortfalls, the Trust says.
Care at the midwife-led Rushey Birthing Unit was suspended eight times in December alone as a result.
Two expectant mums were diverted to the main delivery ward the same month as a result of a lift being out of action.
Trust board papers state recruitment is on-going and a "retention framework has been implemented".
The unit reached its monthly target of delivering 20% of babies born in the hospital three times in 2017, the latest performance report reveals.
Based on the top floor of the Reading-based hospital, the suite opened in 2012 and is designed to create a relaxing and calm environment for expectant mothers.
Clinical equipment and drop-down beds are hidden from view, while mood lighting and birthing pools are also available in the unit's four individual birthing rooms.
Nationally, there is a drive to increase births in midwife-led units.