PERFORMANCE: Barking, Havering and Redbridge University Hospitals Trust is anticipating 9,000 births across its two sites in 2012-13, board papers said.

The outer north east London cluster were “stipulating 8,500 births” the report said. “This is a major reduction for the trust and at the same time the trust has not seen concrete plans that provide assurance that other providers in the region have the capacity to absorb this activity.

“The impact on neonatal units has not been considered by the commissioners. At BHRUT this would mean reduction of up to 4 SCBU cots. The workforce will have to be reviewed and equally other providers will have to identify capacity in their neonatal units.

“Whilst the capacity plans are finalised and contract negotiations concluded BHRUT plan will be for 9000 plus deliveries, especially as there no firm plans and mechanisms for rationalising the number of births across ONEL.”

The move comes after a review of the capping of births at the trust following damning Care Quality Commission reports into its maternity service.

The review by the Royal College of Obstreticians and Gynaecologists found the cap put women at risk by increasing the number of women who needed to be transferred after being brought to BHRUT, the report said.

Between October and January 45 women were diverted to other trusts.

The report added: “Essex trusts have confirmed that they do not have capacity for the women booking there as a result of capping at BHRUT. However, the commissioner and NHSL plans for accommodating the Essex women are not clear” - but it added: “There will be no daily capping of deliveries; however, the London-wide escalation criteria and plan will be applied.

“From 1 April elective lower segment caesarian sections will not be transferred to the Homerton. BHRUT will put systems in place to perform low risk elective LSCS from King George Hospital and provide assurance to the commissioners on the systems and processes in place before starting elective caesareans at King George Hospital.”