WORKFORCE: University Hospitals of Leicester Trust has appointed 16 qualified midwives following a recruitment drive.

The trust’s maternity services were criticised in May after a mother was forced to give birth to a dead baby on a day room floor because midwives were too busy to see her.

The city’s maternity services have been operating beyond their capacity for a decade and currently cope with 11,000 births each year when they are designed for 8,500.

Kerry Clark, clinical support midwife for preceptorship at Leicester’s Hospitals, said: “I am delighted to welcome our new cohort of midwives who will help us to continue to develop safe, high quality maternity care for the women and babies of Leicestershire.”

She added: “We are passionate about the women we care for in Leicestershire and the new midwives will help us to be able to spend more time with women during their labour and birth as well as offering support in the immediate postnatal period.”

The trust is also actively recruiting  more midwives, who are expected to be in post by February 2013.

The recruitment drive is part of a bigger £2.9m strategy to expand maternity services at Leicester’s Hospitals, including investment in improving facilities at the Royal and the General.