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Meanwhile considerable development and investment will continue at the Royal Hospital for Sick Children at Yorkhill, where all paediatric and A&E services are being centralised to serve Greater Glasgow for years to come.
Falling birth rates and pressure to deliver the very best levels of clinical care for mothers and babies mean that one of the two older maternity hospitals will close.
Two years ago, following widespread consultation with women's groups and medical professionals, it was agreed two maternity units should serve Glasgow - one being the new showpiece Princess Royal Maternity.
NHS Board Chairman Sir John Arbuthnott said the consultation process would be thorough and inclusive, offering everyone from MSPs and maternity network groups to clinicians and Glasgow mothers to have their say on the city's future.
It will gather evidence during the summer months and bring a recommendation to the NHS Board in September/October. The Board will then select a preferred option and launch a full public consultation process with a view to formalising a decision early in 2004.
Peter Hamilton, former Greater Glasgow Health Council chairman, Professor Michael Farthing, Dean of Glasgow University's Medical School and Rosslyn Crocket, director of nursing for Greater Glasgow's Primary Care Trust, have accepted positions on the evidence gathering group.
Along with non-executive members of NHS Greater Glasgow Health Board, the group will evaluate evidence from professional, clinical, patient and other sources to recommend which of the Queen Mothers Maternity and the Southern General Maternity would best serve a modernised maternity service for the city.
Professor Reid, a professor of women's health, heads the Division of Community-based Sciences at Glasgow University.
Professor Margaret Reid of the University of Glasgow has accepted the role as external chairperson of the city's Modernising Maternity Services group.