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Covid-19 (coronavirus): important information for families

A helpline has been set up for any inquiries regarding Covid-19 and your maternity care. This number is 01695 656604 and it is available 24 hours per day, seven days a week.

This is the Maternity Triage number and should also be used for all Covid-related queries. Please call if you are pregnant and have symptoms of Covid-19 and/or are currently self-isolating and  have concerns about your pregnancy or yourself or you have been asked to call by your midwife regarding an appointment.

We are putting a number of measures in place to reduce the chance of the spread of Covid-19 and to protect the safety of mothers and babies in our care.


Antenatal care

Please continue to attend your antenatal appointments as scheduled including at your GP surgery.

You can bring one adult with you for:

  • Early pregnancy scans (EPAU)
  • 12 week dating scan
  • 20 week anomaly scan
  • Fetal medicine appointments and scans


Please attend other appointments on your own, including both in the hospital and the community.

If you have any symptoms or are self-isolating as per the national guidelines, please do not attend your routine appointment but call the helpline.

We are aware of some GP closures and are contacting women affected by this to make alternative arrangements to see your midwife.

If you have any concerns about appointment availability or you have any symptoms please call the helpline. We can advise you to ensure that your care is coordinated safely. We have suspended the following services :

  • Parent education
  • Hypnobirthing sessions
  • Routine consultant midwife appointments (birth choices/ VBAC clinic)


Maternity visiting restrictions

From Tuesday 31 March 2020 maternity visiting was suspended until further notice

This is in accordance with national guidance and includes attendance at postnatal appointments, antenatal triage and induction of labour.

The exception to this is for antenatal scans, plus labour and delivery when only one nominated birth partner will be able to accompany the woman to the labour/delivery area. If you are being induced the nominated birth partner will be contacted once labour commences or when transfer to the labour/delivery area is required.

For elective caesarean section, the birth partner should accompany the woman at the time of admission as directed at the pre-op telephone consultation. In all cases the birth partner will be asked to leave the hospital at the point of transfer to a postnatal area. Unfortunately, there will be no further visiting permitted, which includes the birth partner.

We appreciate that this is very restrictive, however this decision has been taken with the best interests of our families in mind and we will endeavor to discharge mums and babies home safely to their families at the earliest opportunity.


Home births

If you are interested in a home birth, please discuss with your community midwife or contact the team on 01695 656668.

Please note, our priority is the safety of all women, their babies and our staff. For this reason we will be following national Covid-19 pandemic guidance on home births as well as for hospital births, antenatal and postnatal care. Your community midwife will discuss this with you during your home assessment visit. Requirements will include the ability to be able to follow social distancing guidance and a limit of one birth partner only.

As the situation is evolving we will continue to review this weekly and update as necessary.


Postnatal care

For your postnatal care we will continue to offer home visits as follows:

  • First day following discharge home
  • Day 5
  • Day 10
  • Additional visits depending on your individual needs


Prior to your visit the Community Midwife will telephone you to check if yourself or a household member is self-isolating.

If you are isolating at home, we will provide telephone consultation with a midwife and follow up will be arranged depending on individual needs preferably after the period of isolation.

However, we will continue to provide care that is essential to mothers and babies throughout this time.

When women are admitted to hospital, we will be checking the temperature of birth partners and anyone with a temperature of 37.8 °C or above they will be requested to leave.

Please be advised that our guidance may change on a daily basis as we continue to receive national updates. We appreciate your co-operation with the measures that we have put in place for your safety.


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