Update on a birth centre for Brighton and Hove

The Brighton and Hove MSLC chair and co-chair (Suzanne Jarrett and Hannah Sherlock) had a meeting yesterday with Matthew Kershaw – the CEO of Brighton and Sussex University Hospital Trust (BSUH) – the organisation that runs the maternity services for Brighton and Hove.

We wanted some clarification on the status of the long-awaited Birth Centre or Midwife Led Unit (MLU) for our city – especially now two new birth pool rooms have been built on Level 13, adjacent to the labour ward at the Royal Sussex. These new rooms are in place as a response to the temporary closure of the Obstetric Unit at Eastbourne – and we wanted to make sure they were not replacing the promised Birth Centre.

Mr. Kershaw reassured us that the MLU remains a top priority for BSUH, is planned to be situated in the Tower Block and is scheduled to be opened sometime during 2014-15. Good news. Another meeting with Matthew is in the diary for June and we’re hoping to be able to report back some firm dates then.

In the meantime, the Royal Sussex now has three rooms with birthing pools – great news for women who are planning a water birth.

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