MP Olivia Blake tells of 'difficult' miscarriage in pandemic

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image captionOlivia Blake called on the government to do more to ensure other women did not have the same experience

A Labour MP learned she had miscarried while her partner waited in a hospital car park during the coronavirus pandemic.

Olivia Blake, MP for Sheffield Hallam, spoke out about her "very difficult" experience in a Parliamentary debate on baby loss.

She called on the government to do more to ensure no woman has to go through the same experience.

Ms Blake said: "No-one should have to hear news on their own."

After being told about her miscarriage, the MP said, she had to relay the news to her partner, who had been waiting in the car.

'No-one to hug'

She told the Westminster Hall debate she had raised concerns about the issue on behalf of her constituents in June.

"Little did I know that I would be experiencing a miscarriage in August and having to go through some of the issues that my constituents had raised with me," she said.

"Going to A&E, my partner having to wait in the car park, getting confused and muddled about my dates, being unable to have a hug, someone to hold my hand or support to hear the news that I was having a miscarriage."

Ms Blake added: "Receiving bad news on your own is not only incredibly traumatic and challenging, but then having to go and repeat that news to your partner in a car park is another level of difficult.

"No-one should be put in that position but too many people have been."

The blanket ban on visiting patients or accompanying them to hospital appointments in England was lifted on 5 June.

It is now left up to individual NHS authorities to decide on rules around outpatient appointments.

Ms Blake welcomed the government's change in advice and guidance on allowing partners to scans and appointments, but said it was "not enough to improve access".

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