Ross calls for Scottish Health Secretary to prioritise restoration of maternity service at Dr Gray’s

Moray MP Douglas Ross has called on Cabinet Secretary for Health, Jeane Freeman MSP, to explain how the Scottish Government will ensure that consultant-led maternity services are restored to Dr Gray’s in Elgin as a matter of urgency.

Commenting ahead of Jeane Freeman’s visit to Elgin,Douglas said: “For too long we have heard a lot of talk from the Scottish Government about the crisis we face without a full maternity service in Elgin, but this has not followed up with action. My wife and I had just heard we were expecting when the unit was downgraded, and now our son will soon be celebrating his first birthday shows just how long this unacceptable situation has been allowed to drag on.

“Expectant mothers in Moray face a lottery as to whether they can use the midwife-led service in Dr Gray’s or be sent to Aberdeen or Inverness. I know from personal experience what a fantastic team of professionals there are at Dr Gray’s, but it’s a shame so many local families have to travel out of Moray to give birth.

“This is madness and it is putting lives at risk. We saw just recently how one mum was sent to Fife in an ambulance because there were no beds available in either of these places. But she should have been able to give birth safely in Elgin, rather than having to endure such a long journey in an advanced state of pregnancy.

“It’s just not acceptable that women have to face travelling the A96 when heavily pregnant and in labour. The journey just adds to the stress of the situation, at what should be an exciting time. The longer this goes on, the more it seems the Scottish Government doesn’t care about Moray or Dr Gray’s.

“Jeanne Freeman and the Scottish Government need to act now to implement a full maternity service in Elgin. We can’t have more empty promises and vague commitments, we need the service back up and running. Anything less is letting people in Moray down.”