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Campaign to use Te Awakairangi Birthing Centre
National List MP based in Hutt South Chris Bishop has launched a campaign urging the Hutt Valley DHB and Government to use the Te Awakairangi Birthing Centre down the road from Hutt Hospital.
“With the Heretaunga Block deemed earthquake-prone, the $9 million upgrade to the maternity unit at the Hutt has been put on hold and the DHB is developing plans to exit the Heretaunga Block entirely,” says Bishop.
“There is understandable anxiety in the Hutt over what will happen to maternity care, which was in a concerning state already before this latest news.
“Last year, thousands signed petitions urging the DHB and Government to save the Te Awakairangi Birthing Centre at Melling just down the road, which opened its purpose-built facility in 2018.
“The DHB refused to enter into a funding agreement with the Birthing Centre, but now they have no excuse. The DHB needs to urgently partner with Te Awakairangi, which remains fully equipped and ready to deliver the local maternity services required.
“Using the Birthing Centre doesn't solve all the problems resulting from the earthquake-prone Heretaunga Block, but it is undoubtedly part of the solution.
“The DHB hasn’t even approached the Wright Family Foundation (who established the Birthing Centre). That needs to change right now.
“I’ve launched a petition which can be signed here:
“It’s time for the DHB to do the right thing. If they won’t, then the Government should step in.”