A north-east MSP has called for assurances Aberdeen’s neonatal unit will not be downgraded.
Health Secretary Jeane Freeman has confirmed the number of intensive care units will be reduced from eight to three, covering the whole of Scotland.
The remaining five would not close but instead be “re-profiled” as local neonatal units and will still carry out a level of neonatal intensive care for babies in the local area.
No decisions have yet been reached on where the final three neonatal intensive care units would be located.
But north-east Conservative MSP Tom Mason is seeking a guarantee that the unit at Aberdeen Royal Infirmary, pictured, will not be downgraded.
He added: “Once again, we are seeing the SNP looking to centralise local services.
“Expectant mothers across the north-east and up in Orkney and Shetland should not be facing the prospect of having to travel any further for treatment.
“I have serious concerns for people living in rural and remote areas, who could find themselves very far from these specialist units.
“Even within Aberdeenshire and Moray at present, the journey to ARI can be an hour or more.
“The Health Secretary must outline as soon as possible what the future plans are for the Aberdeen unit.”
A Scottish Government spokeswoman said: “No neonatal units will close as a result of these changes which are part of a wider package of improvements to neonatal care focused on keeping mother and baby together and supporting families with babies in neonatal care.
“An options appraisal to identify the locations of the final neonatal intensive care units is currently being undertaken and no decisions have yet been made on this.”