A CONCERNED councillor is set to lobby for statistics about the lack of midwives which could be threatening the future of Harwich’s maternity unit.

Harwich town councillor Ivan Henderson is worried the decision to downgrade the unit to a birthing centre, when staff have to cover employee sickness or exceptional demand at Colchester General Hospital will impact on the maternity services consultation later this year.

“I am lodging a Freedon of Information request for date on how many midwives have left in either Harwich or Colchester and the reasons for leaving,” he said.

“It is about time the people withholding information came clean to the public.”

A spokesman for the Colchester University NHS Trust said: “The unit is staffed by an on-call midwife when there is not one available at Harwich due to high demand in Colchester or sickness.

“The only time this has happened this month was last Thursday and due to a midwife in Harwich being off sick.”