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Midwifery Led Unit to reopen on Monday 5 September

Plans to reopen the midwifery led unit (MLU) at Bishop Auckland Hospital in September are on track thanks to a successful recruitment drive.

County Durham and Darlington NHS Foundation Trust has successfully recruited 12 new midwives to the maternity service which includes consultant led units at Durham and Darlington. This means the MLU will be able to reopen on 5 September as planned.

The midwife led unit is a popular choice for around 350 women a year who have low risk pregnancies. It operates with a small group of staff and with some staff leaving the unit and a small number of experienced staff suffering some long term health problems, it meant the Trust did not have enough midwives to cover all rotas safely between 2 July and 5 September.

The unit was therefore temporarily closed on 2 July as the Trust felt it couldn't guarantee safe care 24 hours a day for ladies using the unit.

As well as recruiting to the vacant posts, the Trust is also consulting on a new model of working which would prevent a similar scenario arising in the future.

'I would like to thank all the staff for my treatment and their professionalism.'

Patient, Cardiology Department, Bishop Auckland Hospital