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Last Updated: Monday, 25 July, 2005, 18:53 GMT 19:53 UK
Health bosses plan maternity cuts
Maternity ward
The number of maternity wards would be halved under the plans
The number of maternity wards and children and baby units in Greater Manchester could be halved under plans being considered by health bosses.

The Greater Manchester Strategic Health Authority wants to spend 25m on increasing the services it provides in the home and community.

It said the proposed cuts were not about costs, but about providing a better service.

A public consultation, which ends on 15 September, is being carried out.

'Isn't practical'

Dr Mike Maresh, a consultant obstetrician at St Mary's Hospital, Manchester, said the plans were aimed at improving health services.

"We'd all love a hospital at the end of our road but it's not just practical and unfortunately the current structure isn't practical today.

"Having 13 maternity hospitals and children hospitals connected to them around Manchester - we've got to do something to take us into the 21st Century.

"The public and the professionals are all wanting high standards of care and higher standards of care."

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