Maternity campaigners poll claims

CAMPAIGNERS battling to save a valued overnight maternity service used by East Devon mums say two-thirds of people who completed an online questionnaire are “exhausted” when they leave the hospital.

The online poll was e-mailed to more than 2,800 people, including some in Sidmouth and Ottery. A debate on whether or not to endorse proposals to end overnight stays at the unit was set to take place at a meeting of Devon County Council’s Adults Health Scrutiny panel as the Herald went to press yesterday.

“The results of the survey confirm that the retention of overnight facilities at Honiton Maternity Unit is not just a luxury, but an essential option for new mums,” said campaigner Councillor Vernon Whitlock.

Retired Ottery GP, John Ackroyd added: “I am not surprised by the results of this survey.”