Junior doctors talks need ‘time and space’, says Victoria Atkins

Recounting her own experience of giving birth to her first child, Ms Atkins said she had had “amazing care” but before the birth had been put on a ward with mothers who had had “very, very traumatic experiences”.

“Seeing other mums in a great deal of distress, it was quite frightening actually,” she said.

The hospital had since “rejigged things” and there were “better services and facilities available”.

“But it’s why for me, this is personal,” Ms Atkins said.

“I want every woman to feel safe and happy as she goes in to give birth.”

Someone in pain, in distress or frightened could struggle to “articulate their concerns”, so it was important hospitals had a culture of “non-defensive transparency”, she said

Labour’s shadow health secretary Wes Streeting called the report “sobering” and said his party would “work in the same bipartisan spirit to deliver results”.

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