Preg­nant women left in the lurch

He wahine hapu¯ kua mahue ki ra­haki

South Waikato News - - NEWS / HE PURONGORONGO -

A lack of ma­ter­nity ser­vices in Toko­roa has forced women to travel out of town for scans.

Hori­zon Ra­di­ol­ogy pulled the plug on the ser­vices last year be­cause the com­pany was mak­ing a loss.

Man­ag­ing di­rec­tor Mary Gor­don said fi­nan­cially it be­came ‘‘ too un­sus­tain­able for us to do’’.

Gor­don said the com­pany pro­vided com­mu­nity ser­vices at it’s own ex­pense and she said cus­tomers could not pay the sur­charges.

‘‘We were very sad to see it close . . . I would have con­tin­ued it if we were break­ing even but we weren’t.’’

The last re­sort was to ask the Waikato DHB for fund­ing but she said they could not pro­vide it. The DHB said they had no such re­quest.

Kathleen Waka was one of many moth­ers-to-be left in the lurch.

She en­deav­oured to make her preg­nancy scans at Ro­torua Hospi­tal but with no car it was not easy.

The 23-year old and her part­ner Ja­son Price made the trip four times dur­ing her preg­nancy at $40 a pop.

And that was only when Waka man­aged to bor­row her nephew’s car.

Each trip to Ro­torua meant dip­ping into the $110 they had left over for the week.

‘‘We had to sur­vive by our­selves on the job­seek­ers ben­e­fit.. we had to give up some gro­ceries,’’ she said.

In­de­pen­dent mid­wife Ter­essa Lind­sey has worked in Toko­roa for just over two years and sees four to six women per month.

She said they all have been forced to travel to ei­ther Ro­torua or Waikato Hospi­tal for their scans.

‘‘It is so im­por­tant to have scans.. we are watch­ing for that growth,’’ she said.

Lind­sey said all women nor­mally have a dat­ing scan to start with.

And other scans are to track growth as well as iden­ti­fy­ing foetal ab­nor­mal­ity.

Al­though she be­lieves there needs to be a fa­cil­ity at Toko­roa Hospi­tal she said it comes down to the sono­g­ra­phers be­ing avail­able.

Stuck: Kathleen Waka, left, with 1-week old Zavier and part­ner Ja­son Price have suf­fered from the town’s lack of ma­ter­nity ser­vices.

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