More support needed to care for premature babies

Central Scotland list MSP Richard Leonard highlights the Bliss Scotland baby report 2017
Central Scotland list MSP Richard Leonard highlights the Bliss Scotland baby report 2017

Last year over 1,000 babies born in Lanarkshire needed specialist neonatal care to help them survive.

Now, Central Scotland list MSP Richard Leonard is calling for more support following the publication of the Bliss Scotland baby report 2017.

The report highlights that one in 10 babies born in Scotland is admitted to neonatal care.

It claims three quarters of units do not have enough nurses to meet minimum standards for providing safe, high quality care.

One third of units are unable to provide community outreach, two thirds do not have enough medical staff to meet minimum standards and over half do not have enough overnight accommodation for parents of critically ill babies.

Mr Leonard has backed Bliss Scotland which is demanding urgent action from NHS Scotland, health boards and Scottish Government to address these issues and many more.

Caroline Lee-Davey, chief executive of Bliss Scotland, said: “Bliss Scotland’s report highlights the need to take immediate action to address current staffing issues.

“Services for premature and sick babies are already overstretched, and any plan for improvements must provide sufficient funding to address the problems that exist now.”

Mr Leonard added: “I have been proud to support the work that Bliss do right across Scotland to help those babies in specialist neonatal care and their families. And the results from their report are clear – now is the moment for action.

“Across Lanarkshire over 1,000 babies were in specialist neonatal care last year. Families need support now from the Scottish Government, and I will work with Bliss to make sure that happens.”