9 Sep 2009

MPs petitioned to hold maternity services review

5:13 pm on 9 September 2009

Achieving a good outcome in a difficult birth is a matter of luck and an independent review of maternity services is needed, MPs have been told.

The Health Select Committee heard submissions on Wednesday from The Good Fight, a group which represents families that have experienced tragedies with births.

The group is petitioning Parliament for a review of New Zealand's 20-year-old maternity system including the training of midwives and better data collection on births.

Shannon Beynon's daughter Emma died after two days following a prolonged labour 13 years ago.

Ms Beynon told MPs that, on a daily basis, families are experiencing bad births which can sometimes be avoided.

"We have more babies dying every year than people dying on our roads. But we don't know how many of those are avoidable because we're not counting them."

The group is also calling for more help for families that experience bad outcomes from their maternity care.