Birthing pools lined up for Hillcrest mums-to-be

Facilities at maternity units across Northumberland and North Tyneside are set to be improved thanks to a share of £25million of national funding.

Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust has secured £166,000 funding from the Department of Health after successfully bidding for the cash for all five of its maternity units last year.

This money will be used to improve facilities for women at Hillcrest Maternity Unit in Alnwick, Berwick Maternity Unit and units at Wansbeck, Hexham and North Tyneside general hospitals.

Some funding will be used to provide birthing pools for the midwifery-led units at Hillcrest and Berwick which can help make labour less stressful and painful.

Janice McNichol, head of midwifery at Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust, who put together the funding bids, said: “We are delighted to secure this national funding which will enable us to improve facilities for women at all five of our maternity units from Berwick to North Tyneside.

“We worked hard on putting together the bids last year and it is great news that we now have this money to improve facilities for patients and their families and for our maternity staff.”