ANTOINETTE Sandbach is calling on the Government to ban the sale of a device used by parents to check the heartbeat of their unborn baby.

The MP for Eddisbury will introduce a 10-minute rule motion to the House of Commons on Wednesday, October 11, pushing for a ban on over-the-counter sales of home dopplers.

Dopplers, which are widely available to buy online and in leading retailers, work by sending ultrasound waves into the body which reflect off moving blood vessels and simulate a sound.

They are used by parents looking for reassurance that their baby is healthy, but can falsely reassure parents if a sound is made due to the many vessels surrounding a baby, when in fact the baby could be in distress.

Ms Sandbach said: "The 10-minute rule bill not only tackles a really serious issue around the dangers of using home dopplers but also raises awareness of the death of a baby.

"As someone who has been through this experience, I am determined to raise awareness around this issue and make positive changes to current policy.

"I hope that the work of the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Baby Loss, which I am co-chair, along with this bill will help towards reducing the number of stillbirths and neonatal deaths and improve the services provided to those that are affected."

Ms Sandbach's 10-minute rule bill calls for only medical professionals to be able to purchase the equipment, stopping those without a required license to do so.

The bill comes during Baby Loss Awareness Week, which will see 40 charities host a number of events across the UK.

Elizabeth Hutton, chief executive of pregnancy and stillbirth charity Kicks Count, started the campaign and a petition to ban the sale of over-the-counter home dopplers earlier this year.

"We are delighted that Antoinette Sandbach MP has taken up our cause and is spearheading a call for Government action on the sale of over the counter home dopplers," she said.

"These devices are not safe in untrained hands and can provide false reassurance for women who may need to be seen by a medical professional.

"We presented a petition to Downing Street on this issue in the summer which has been signed by over 12,500 people so this is a subject that many people feel strongly about."