Day 3 - Question #3 - PANDAS Foundation UK

Question 3:

Do you have any intention of opening more Mother and Baby Units in the UK to ensure that Mothers and families don’t have to travel miles away from home?  Is there a possibility that a Mother and Baby Unit could be placed in every hospital?

CONSERVATIVE (The Rt Hon Grant Shapps) – Conservative

Having easy access to specialist care for those who experience mental health difficulties during and after pregnancy is extremely important. That is why we are putting training in place to ensure there are specialist staff trained in perinatal mental health in every birthing unit in the country by 2017.

LIBERAL DEMOCRAT (Norman Lamb) – Liberal Democrat

We have committed to funding 8 new mother and baby units and will ensure 40 linked community services to guarantee mothers and babies the joined up support they need.

GREEN PARTY (Jillian Creasy) – Green

The Green Party would set national standards of care to make sure that no part of the country is left behind, but we would let local areas to work out the best way of achieving them, because we believe that health professionals are best placed to determine how they should work. Staff in the health service are tired of constant reorganisation which does not always listen to them as experts. Our substantial investments in mental health will make sure that it catches up with physical health in terms of status and funding by the end of the next five-year Parliament. We say five years because it will take time to train all the new staff which are needed. The Green Party is also completely opposed to the introduction of market mechanisms and privatisation into our healthcare services, which put service standards at risk and could mean the introduction of charges for more NHS services, as well as wasting money that could be spent on helping patients. We will fight for a fully publicly funded, publicly managed NHS, free at the point of use for all.

TUSC (Hannah Sell) –TUSC 

We agree that there are not enough and this is because of NHS cuts and because services are chosen based purely on the availability of increasingly limited finances. Under socialist policies decisions would be based on the actual needs of the population. We would want every mother and child assessed as being in need of care and monitoring in a mother and baby unit to have timely and speedy access. We think that the thresholds for admission to specialist post-natal mental health care are too high and many families are denied services. We would direct resources to remedy this situation and health care would be based on need and not on profit. It is of paramount importance that mothers and babies have support from partners and extended family to aid recovery and barriers to recovery like long travel time must be removed.

PLAID CYMRU (Heledd Brooks-Jones) – Plaid Cymru

We are opposed to the centralization of services that is currently happening under the present UK and Welsh Government. We want care to be provided as close to the people as possible.

SNP (Shona Robison) –

SNPThe SNP Scottish government announced earlier this year that it is undertaking a refresh of their approach to maternity and neonatal services to ensure that every mother and baby continues to get the best possible care from Scotland’s health service. As part of this review, consideration will be given as to whether in the face of changing demographics and birth rates, Scotland has the right maternity and neonatal services in place to continue to deliver and enhance the excellent care provided.

AUTHOR

Catherine Jones

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