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Burwood Birthing Unit to temporarily reopen

Tuesday 5 April 2016Media release2 minutes to read

Canterbury DHB will temporarily reopen the Burwood Birthing Unit.

The announcement was made at a meeting this week with Lead Maternity Carers, key stakeholders and staff.

Canterbury DHB closed the unit after staff and women felt unsafe being there following the magnitude 5.7 earthquake on February 14.

David Meates, Canterbury DHB chief executive, says Canterbury DHB had originally intended to keep the Burwood unit open until it had built a new primary maternity unit in the Christchurch area.

“However, the February 14 quake forced our hand and it's no longer an option.

“A band aid solution is just not viable when you consider the Primary Birthing Strategy and what is needed in the long term for our community.

“The Burwood Birthing Unit is a 1940s building that contains significant asbestos through many parts of the building. This creates real issues doing even basic repairs, or any work on the building,” he says.

Mr Meates says the DHB is committed to providing the right primary maternity services for the community.

“We will continue to work closely with LMCs, our staff and the community to find an agreed way forward.”

The temporary reopening will only be until June 30, 2016 and will be flagged for demolition thereafter. ​



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