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Hollande orders inquiry after pregnant woman loses baby on motorway

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French President François Hollande has ordered an inquiry after a woman lost her baby on a motorway because the nearest maternity unit was over an hour’s drive from her home.

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“No French citizen should be living more than 30 minutes away from a emergency unit,” Hollande said Saturday after the news hit the headlines.

On Friday a woman in the south-western Lot department tried to deliver her own baby in her car as her partner drove her to the maternity unit in Brive over an hour away from her home in Figeac.

A nearby maternity unit was closed in 2009, despite opposition from doctors and medical staff.

Campaigners responded by calling for a moratorium on further closures, claiming that two-thirds of maternity units have closed over the last 20 years.

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