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Last Updated: Sunday, 22 August, 2004, 07:25 GMT 08:25 UK
Midwife sacked after home birth
Pregnant woman
Mr Beland said the ban was made for financial reasons
A male midwife has been sacked after defying a ban on home births, hospital managers have confirmed.

Paul Beland, 46, a community midwife of 11 years, was suspended in July after helping a woman to give birth to a baby boy at her Peterborough home.

Managers at Peterborough District Hospital had banned planned home births due to staff shortages as they usually require two midwives to attend.

Mr Beland said the ban was financially motivated and breached women's rights.

He said the hospital did not want to allow home births because the hospital would have to pay one midwife to be on call throughout the night in case of emergencies.

Disciplinary hearing

Mr Beland, from Bourne in Linconshire, also claimed the ban breached the rules of the Nursing and Midwifery Council, which states that if a woman insists on giving birth at home a midwife must not withdraw their care.

The Peterborough and Stamford NHS Trust issued a statement saying: "Our investigation is now complete and a hearing has taken place.

"The outcome of the hearing is that Mr Beland has been dismissed from the Trust".

Mr Beland has not commented on his sacking.

His dismissal came despite a support campaign.

Peterborough MP Helen Clark tabled an Early Day motion in the Commons which MPs were invited to sign if they believed there should be a debate on the matter.

Midwife shortage risk to babies
16 Feb 04  |  Health

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