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Mums upset at cuts to breastfeeding group

(l-r) Sarah Whittle with her children Arlo and Harrison, Bev Simmons with Alexander, Kate Glasby and Rosie, Tasha Hawkins and Sunny Isbell, Kerry Bridgman, Cassie Thorne and Bettie Brooks, and front Ashley Morgan with Luke .
Picture: Ian Hargreaves (142454-2)

(l-r) Sarah Whittle with her children Arlo and Harrison, Bev Simmons with Alexander, Kate Glasby and Rosie, Tasha Hawkins and Sunny Isbell, Kerry Bridgman, Cassie Thorne and Bettie Brooks, and front Ashley Morgan with Luke . Picture: Ian Hargreaves (142454-2)

MUMS have told of their disappointment that a breastfeeding team is to reduce the amount of support it provides.

The Breastfeeding Support and Healthy Weight Team, run by Solent NHS Trust, supports women who would like to breastfeed from the moment their baby is born.

But the trust said that from October 6 it will no longer be able to offer free support mums within the first two weeks after they have given birth due to financial constraints.

Mums who currently use the service have said they are disappointed and angry, and that they want the team to remain in place for other parents.

Bev Simmons, 38, of Sutherland Road, Southsea, is mum to one-year-old Alex.

She said: ‘The first few weeks are intense and difficult. I did speak to health visitors, and although they know a lot, they are not experts like those on the breastfeeding team. The team are brilliant and it seems silly to stop that.’

Kate Glasby, 34, of Lovett Road, Copnor, is mum to nine-month-old Rosie. She said: ‘It’s a shame to lose some of this service.

‘I had issues with breastfeeding to begin with – I think I would have given up at around day six if I did not have their support.

‘They came to my home, they were available on the phone and were just great.’

The trust said it has been providing help straight after birth free of charge, but can no longer carry on.

Service manager Anne Fleming said: ‘While we share mums’ concerns over this pending change, it is a necessary one for us to make when you consider NHS financial constraints.

‘However, we are not abandoning breastfeeding mums.

‘Midwives in the city will continue to provide services in the early hours and days in the postnatal period with our health visitors taking over from 10 days and beyond.

‘Telephone contact will be available through midwifery and health visiting services.’

‘Although I appreciate these changes may raise concerns, it also offers a new integrated way of working.’

 

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