See this from the Royal College of Midwives news release two days ago:
‘New research published today (11 September) reveals NHS [ENGLAND!] maternity units are more likely to close (due to staff shortages) at the end of the week and during holiday periods due to staff availability and more complex births. According to the findings by the Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS), closures are more likely on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays than they are on Mondays to Wednesdays. The research also revealed that 50% more closures occurred in June compared to January, even though the number of births is roughly the same.’
You’ll see there the usual tendency among reporters and the RCM itself to forget that there are 4 NHS systems in the UK and that they need to be precise in their language. The full report does make it clear: ‘Under pressure? NHS maternity services in England’ (link below).
I searched and searched for any evidence of weekend closures in Scottish maternity units, due to staff shortages and could find no mention anywhere. It was probably a waste of time because I feel sure that BBC Scotland’s team of research assistants will have been on the job and if they’d found a sniff of a weekend closure in Scotland, it would have been all over the news and picked up by all the Unionist media. So, I have to assume this is more evidence of crises in NHS England and ongoing strong performance in NHS Scotland but then we knew that already from these earlier reports:
SNP fail again to create a crisis in Scottish hospitals?