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Staff shortage at Torrington

5.6.1964 Torrington maternity unit

A lot of young wives in Torrington were anxious to see the maternity unit at the Cottage Hospital re-opened, and was there any hope of this, asked Cllr H Pollard at Monday night’s meeting of Torrington Town Council.
The unit has been closed for some time because of shortage of staff.
A number of women were having their babies at home but were not keen on this, and if they went to hospitals in neighbouring towns it was a long way for husbands to travel at the end of the day, said Cllr Pollard.
The Medical Officer of Health, Dr C F R Briggs, thought that everything that could be done towards getting the unit re-opened was being done, and this was endorsed by Ald. F R Hodge, a member of the hospital’s advisory committee, who added that there was extensive advertising for staff. “I know it is a grave situation but, honestly, I don’t think anything further can be done” added the doctor. “The trouble is that there are more jobs than there are midwives to fill them, and midwives can choose where they go. It is a very small unit in Torrington and it doesn’t give them a lot of experience and work”.
Gazette article dated 5 June 1964

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