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Maternity

Keeping you, your baby and family safe while living with Covid-19

If you have a specific inquiry regarding Covid-19 and your pregnancy/maternity care, please contact us on 01695 656604. We are available 24 hours per day, seven days a week.

Please call if you are pregnant and have symptoms of Covid-19 or have tested positive for Covid-19 and have concerns about your pregnancy or yourself.

We still have several 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.

For non-Covid-19 related concerns regarding your pregnancy, please continue to use:

  • Early Pregnancy Unit 01695 656064 (Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm)
  • G Ward (emergency gynaecology problems or early pregnancy out of hours) 01695 656901
  • 16-weeks pregnant or over maternity triage 01695 656604 (24 hours)

 

Unfortunately, we are unable to provide advice on employment related issues.

 

Antenatal care

Please continue to attend your antenatal appointments as scheduled including any with your community midwife at your GP surgery.

You can bring one asymptomatic adult with you to all your ultrasound scan and antenatal appointments.  Antenatal appointments which take place in community settings will be subject to the restrictions put in place by the GP practice or health centre.

Unfortunately, children under 16 remain unable to attend appointments with you.

If you have any symptoms of Covid -19, or have tested positive for Covid-19, please do not attend your routine appointment but call the helpline.

If you have any concerns about appointment availability or you have any symptoms that you are concerned about, please call 01695 656604. We can advise you to ensure that your care is coordinated safely.

Covid testing for pregnant women and their support person/partner attending all planned antenatal appointments, pregnancy assessment appointments and ultrasound scans

It is important that you contact us and let us know if you have tested positive for Covid-19 or have symptoms of Covid-19 as a midwife will need to advise you on whether your appointment can be delayed or if measures need to be put in place to facilitate you still attending.

If your support partner has tested positive for Covid-19 or has symptoms of Covid-19 we request that they do not attend the Maternity Unit and encourage you to consider bringing an alternative asymptomatic support person to accompany you.

When you attend for any appointment, you and your support partner will be screened for signs/symptoms of Covid-19, norovirus and the flu prior to entering the waiting room.  Support partners will be unable to accompany you further if they screen positive.  Should you screen positive additional measures may need to be put in place for your appointment in order to mitigate any risk.

We ask that you continue to use Infection prevention and control measures when attending your appointments by socially distancing, using the hand sanitiser provided and wearing a face covering (these can be found at the entrances to the hospital if you do not have your own).

Remember, if you have tested positive for Covid-19 or you have symptoms of Covid-19, please contact us and do not attend for your appointment unless you have been told to do so.

  • Contact 01695 656949 for antenatal clinic appointments
  • The community midwives on 01695 656668 if you had an antenatal appointment in a community setting
  • 01695 656507 for pregnancy assessment unit appointments

 

Attendance at triage, labour and delivery

You can bring one asymptomatic support person/partner to attendances at triage and for the duration of labour and delivery. In addition a second asymptomatic support person/partner can accompany you during the active stages of labour and birth when you are on delivery suite.

On arrival all patients will be expected to have a Covid PCR swab if admission to the maternity unit is likely either following attendance or within 72hrs of attendance.  In the event of a positive swab on or prior to admission an individual plan will be discussed with you.

If you are booked for an elective caesarean section or induction of labour, you will be asked to attend for a Covid PCR swab two days prior to admission. This will be arranged when you are given your admission date.  In addition whilst you remain an in-patient on our maternity unit you will also have Covid swabs taken on the day of admission (day 1), day 3, day 5 and every 5 days following this.

Those booked for elective caesarean section will be limited to one birth partner due to restrictions in the operating theatre.

Supporting partners do not require a swab but will be screened on attendance for signs/symptoms of Covid-19, norovirus and the flu.  They should not attend the maternity unit if they are symptomatic or have tested positive for Covid-19.  We request instead that you consider bringing an alternative asymptomatic support partner to attend with you.

If you are being induced your nominated birth partner can be with you from admission or can be contacted once labour commences. The induction process can take several days and your partner’s movements on and off the ward will be very restricted.

For elective caesarean section, the birth partner should accompany the woman at the time of admission as directed at the pre-op consultation.  At point of transfer to the postnatal area your birth partner will be asked to leave unless it is during visiting hours.

 

Maternity visiting restrictions for support person/partners

All support person/partners will be expected to comply with the information above, this will ensure that the maternity unit is safe for all. A support person can be a friend/relative/doula. This information sets out the current arrangements for an asymptomatic support person/partner.

Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, maternity visiting is still restricted. This remains in accordance with national guidance.

During your pregnancy, you are entitled to bring one support person/partner to all your antenatal appointments and attendances at the hospital. Unfortunately, at this time children under 16 remain unable to attend these appointments.

If you are an inpatient at the hospital, either during your pregnancy or following the birth, visiting on the ward will be from 10am to 7pm each day. You can choose two people who can come at different times within this period although only one person can be at the bedside at any one time.

If you are admitted for induction or in early labour, one of your two chosen support person/partners can come in with you and remain with you throughout. They will be able to swap over if you wish or can come in when you feel you need them. (Please note that there are limited facilities in the hospital for support people/partners. Toilets are available but no other washing facilities.)

When you are on delivery suite for the birth, you can have both support person/partners with you at all times.

If you are having an elective caesarean section only one person should attend with you (this is due to restrictions in theatre). However, a 2nd person can then be an alternative visitor.

Support person/partners in addition to being screened for signs/symptoms of Covid-19 on arrival and will be expected to wear a face mask at all times in addition to any additional PPE requirements as guided by the staff in that area.

 

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 pregnant women/people, their babies and our staff. For this reason, we will be following national Covid-19 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.

As the situation continues to evolve, we will continue to review this guidance 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

 

If you are due a visit and either yourself or any household member has tested positive for Covid-19 or has symptoms of Covid-19, please let us know by contacting the Community Midwifery team on 01695 656668 as depending on individual needs we may continue to attend as planned or delay your visit, conducting a telephone consultation instead.

We will continue to provide care that is essential to mothers and babies throughout this time.

Please be advised that our guidance may change 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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