Health minister Steven Miles summons medical experts to summit examining the issue

Woeful access to maternity services in rural and remote Queensland has prompted the state’s health minister to summon Australia’s top medical experts to take part in a summit examining the issue.

It comes after the Sunday Mail revealed 23.3 babies in every 1,000 were dying in some rural Queensland towns where no birthing services are available, compared with 6.1 babies in rural areas with obstetrics. Rural doctors told the Sunday Mail that the closure of 40 rural and regional obstetric units had contributed to the higher death rate in those areas, with women forced to deliver their babies at home or on the roadside trying to get to a hospital.

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Read More Queensland’s rise in baby deaths after obstetric unit closures sparks urgent rethink

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