A maternity ward is a specialised unit within a hospital dedicated to providing care for pregnant women, expectant mothers in labour, and their new-born infants. These wards typically offer a range of services, including prenatal care, labour and delivery support, postpartum care, and neonatal care for new-borns. The primary goal of a maternity ward is to ensure the safety and well-being of both the mother and the baby throughout the pregnancy, and childbirth process, providing medical care, emotional support, and education to families during this significant life event. So, it is quite a change when one of these maternity wards closes. In this report, I will explore the effects this could have on families and other hospitals.

The hospital being discussed is the 'Eastbourne District General Hospital' better known as DGH Hospital. This was due to a shortage of maternity staff within the establishment. It is said from other reports that this is due to more people wanting home births (which need a minimum of two midwives per birth.) This then puts more strain on the labour ward at the hospital as fewer people are working there. Because of the strain this had on the hospital, it was forced to close the maternity ward at the DGH Hospital fully. Therefore, mothers, fathers and families must travel an average of 38 minutes to get from DGH Hospital to the Conquest Hospital or the Brighton Hospital.

This means that people from the surrounding areas who would have gone to DGH Hospital will have to navigate a half-hour journey to reach another hospital. Either by their means of transport or ambulances, which could negatively affect those who need the ambulances for other incidents, so it is fair to believe that this action will strain the families and the hospitals. With an increase in demand for maternity midwives, there is a higher chance of more hospitals buckling under the weight and pressure of an overrun maternity ward.