Maternity plan does not make sense - mother

An expectant mother does not ''understand the logic'' of building a primary birthing unit so far from Christchurch Women's Hospital (CWH).

The Canterbury District Health Board (CDHB) plans to ease pressure on the congested CWH by building a primary unit on the old women's hospital site in Colombo St.

Maternity advocates say the location has not been considered carefully enough and women will still have to travel more than 10 minutes by ambulance to CWH.

Burwood resident Jess Tait, who is expecting her third child in September, said she had delivered her first two children at CWH.

''I was intending on birthing at Burwood but I had some minor complications, so I was taken to Women's.''

She said building a birthing unit that was ''the same distance away from Women's as St George's Hospital'' did not make sense.

''The primary units don't really have enough beds, but neither does the hospital, so if they're going to spend money on a new unit then it should be as close to the hospital as possible,'' she said.

Tait said she ''can't imagine how awfully long those transfers must feel''.

Women might feel more comfortable birthing in a primary unit if the hospital ''was literally next door''.

''Some women do prefer primary units, so there needs to be options, but if a lot of people are going to Women's, then you could encourage them more if they knew that the secondary and specialist facilities were really, really close,'' she said.

The Press