Thank you to the constituents who have contacted me about pregnancy care and the December meeting of the All-Party Parliamentary Pro-Life Group.
Whilst I did not attend the meeting in December, it is my firm belief that pregnant women deserve access to safe and legal health procedures and I hope that the safety of pregnant women and their babies is and will always be an absolute priority for the National Health Service. By supporting and ensuring women’s autonomy in maternity services, the NHS can provide world-class, safe, and personalised maternity care.
Pregnant women can access information and support through their GP as well as at sexual and reproductive health services. Counselling from a trained pregnancy counsellor is also available to anyone considering their pregnancy options. I know NHS guidance highlights that there are other organisations that offer counselling around pregnancy, but also cautions that they “may not offer balanced or accurate advice”. It is my view that maintaining a non-biased stance on maternity issues should be key in these cases.
A healthy pregnancy sets up the unborn baby for a healthy life, and I understand that supporting the mental and physical wellbeing of the mother is crucial to a baby’s healthy development. However, I personally understand how difficult and stressful pregnancy and birth can be and it is vital that perinatal mental health services promote prevention, early detection, and diagnosis of mental health problems.
I believe we can do more to support and help expectant mothers and mothers with new-born babies. I will continue to push the Government to ensure the NHS provides maternity services for all women and pregnant people that put consideration and autonomy at the forefront of crisis care.