Lumsden Birthing Centre in Southland to close despite community outcry - 'Could put babies and mothers at greater risk'

The Lumsden Maternity Centre, in Southland, will close despite strong opposition from the local community.

The Southern District Health Board has announced that the birthing unit will become a maternal and child hub, where babies are only delivered in an emergency.

Earlier this year, a protest march was held down Lumsden's main street and a 4000 signature petition was presented in opposition to the proposed closure.

The Southern District Health Board has today released its final plan for an Integrated Primary Maternity System of Care, which it said had a strong emphasis on the midwifery workforce.

The plan includes establishing maternal and child hubs in five locations - Wanaka, Te Anau, Tuatapere, Ranfurly, and Lumsden.

The DHB said the plan also included funding support for midwives working in remote rural locations, to recognise the additional duties they perform, and investment in technology to support access to specialist care and reduce the need to travel.

The Clutha-Southland MP, National's Hamish Walker, said the move decision puts mothers and babies at risk.

"What we know is that delays in getting to maternity care compromises outcomes and could put babies and mothers at greater risk. This is a risk that the government is forcing on Clutha-Southland mothers by cutting services in Lumsden."

He said when the centre closes mothers may have to travel up to 130 kilometres to give birth.

Mr Walker said the population in the area was increasing, especially with a new 1000 home housing development planned for nearby Kingston.

He said he and National's health spokesperson, Michael Woodhouse, would meet with directors of the maternity centre on Monday to support the push for full maternity services to continue.

The announcement means the Lumsden facility will provide pre and post-natal care, but won’t be a birthing centre. Source: 1 NEWS



Dad refused entry to change daughter's diaper in parents' room at Wellington mall - 'I am outraged!'

A Wellington father says he was denied entry into a baby change room at a mall by a woman who was already using the space. 

Tua Fa'avale and his wife Sarah Fa'avale were at Queensgate Mall in Lower Hutt yesterday, looking to buy a car seat when their three-month-old daughter Tahani needed a diaper change.

This seemingly routine chore didn't go as planned however, with Tua reportedly denied access to the room by a mum already in it.

Tahani's mum posted about her husband's experience on Facebook shortly after the incident occurred.

"I am outraged!!! This afternoon Tua and I were at Queensgate. While I was ordering a new car seat for Tahani, Tua took her to the parents' room to change her nappy.

"When he went to enter however, a lady started yelling at him saying; 'um excuse me!!! you can’t go in there, there’s mums in there!'.

"Tua then had to leave to come and find me to change Hani’s nappy as all this time she was sitting in her poos!"

Sarah went on to write that the encounter left her "fuming".

"I just can’t believe some people!!! We are in 2018!!! I am absolutely gobsmacked that in this day and age a new father can’t change his own daughters nappy in a PARENTS Room!????

"I have never been so mad in my life!!!!!!!"

Queenstown Gate Mall told Stuff it had talked to the Fa'avale family and is working to make it "absolutely clear" that fathers are welcome in their parents' rooms. 

Source: Facebook/Sarah Fa'avale

TODAY'S
FEATURED STORIES

Shot fired, vehicles damaged during gang-attack at Hawke's Bay property

A gang-related attack at a Hawke's Bay property last night saw five vehicles damaged and a shot fired.

Police say the attack occurred at a Flaxmere home around 10pm.

Two people were assaulted during the incident and received minor injuries.

Five vehicles were also damaged during the incident.

Police also believe a shot was fired by one of the offenders, but nobody was injured as a result.

Police would like to hear from anyone who can provide information on 06 831 0700 or anonymously via Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111. 

Source: iStock