Mike Starkie, Mayor of Copeland, has made the following statement on today's decision to retain consultant-led maternity at the West Cumberland Hospital, Whitehaven.
"I am elated at the decision to retain consultant-led maternity services at the West Cumberland Hospital.
"It’s been a long road to get to this landmark day, travelled by our community and workforce at the hospital, and it’s a tremendous relief for everyone that the decision of the NHS North Cumbria CCG’s Governing Body is the correct one.
"Praise was quite rightly given by today’s decision-makers to the dedicated maternity staff who are working so hard to deliver a first-class service. Equally, the community’s voice has been unequivocal in its determination that the removal of consultant-led maternity is simply not an option.
This collaboration between the staff, the community and the Trust has been instrumental in today’s decision.
"We cannot become complacent however. The some of the challenges around sustainability that brought us to this point still remain, namely around recruitment.
"There are tremendous things going on in healthcare in West Cumbria, and now the threat over maternity has been lifted, we should all take collective responsibility to ‘talk the area up’ to promote our hospital and services to ensure we never find ourselves in this position again."