January 9, 2018
Bliss Scotland campaign success as Scottish Government announces £1.5 million neonatal Family Fund
The Scottish Government has announced that it is creating a £1.5 million Family Fund to support parents of premature babies in neonatal care with travel and food expenses, following campaigning by Bliss Scotland.
Shona Robison MSP, Cabinet Secretary for Health and Sport, said the fund will be distributed to health boards across Scotland to help reduce the financial burden on parents while on the neonatal unit from April 2018.
This announcement follows a recent campaign by Bliss Scotland to improve parent facilities on units. Bliss Scotland's research found that 79 per cent of Scottish parents said they were financially worse off after their baby's stay on a neonatal unit - perhaps not surprising given that 10 of Scotland's neonatal units are unable to support parents with food and drink costs, and that on average Scottish parents travel 35 miles a day to be with their baby on the unit.
Caroline Lee-Davey, Chief Executive of Bliss Scotland, says: "We warmly welcome this announcement of much-needed financial support for families across Scotland with a baby in neonatal care. This fund will help more parents to be with their baby for as much time as possible and to play a hands-on role in their babies' care."
For more information, see the special report in the January issue of Infant journal.