NHS maternity staff are looking to reassure expectant and new parents that maternity services are open, they can continue to attend their appointments and services are personal and safe so they continue to come forward for routine checks and urgent advice.
Maternity services in Cheshire and Merseyside are working hard to ensure expectant parents and newborn babies receive the highest quality care during the coronavirus pandemic. They are doing all they can to make sure services are personal and safe. This means that some appointments may now be made by telephone or by video call, women may need to have their babies in a different place to where they had planned and they may see staff wearing protective clothing.
The message from NHS maternity services is clear:
- If you are pregnant, it is important that you still attend your antenatal appointments and continue to seek advice from your midwife or maternity team.
- If you are worried about your health or the health of your unborn baby, please contact your midwife or maternity team.
- For the latest pregnancy and birth advice, go to NHS.uk or contact 111.nhs.uk
- It's really important that women have a midwife with them when they are giving birth to ensure they and their baby are safe. One birth partner is encouraged, so long as they do not have symptoms of coronavirus.
Local people can be reassured that maternity and birthing services are completely separate to NHS services treating COVID-19 patients, so the risk of catching COVID-19 from these patients is minimal.
Dr Alice Bird, Consultant Obstetrician at Liverpool Women’s NHS Foundation Trust, said:
“The NHS is working incredibly hard to keep services running and to ensure that high quality care continues to be delivered throughout the Coronavirus pandemic. This includes maternity services and so you will notice some changes to the way in which your care is provided during pregnancy.
“Our teams will be wearing protective clothing when they see you; this is important to protect both you and them. Some appointments may now take place by telephone or video call, although it will still be necessary to see you in person for some appointments. A small number of women may be advised to have their babies in a different place to where they had originally planned but we will support you with this change so that you continue to have a positive birth experience.
“Your maternity team are here for you. We would ask that you attend antenatal appointments as advised and if you have any concerns about you or your baby, please contact your local maternity team as you would have done before the pandemic. This is important so that we can continue to deliver safe care and provide you with the information you need to make decisions about your care.”
Claire Mathews, Regional Chief Midwife for the North West, said:
“Maternity services in Cheshire and Merseyside are still here for you, providing the high quality care that you need to ensure you and your baby are safe and well. We are making sure the care is as safe as we possibly can and it’s really important you still attend your ante-natal and scan appointments to ensure everything is going well in your pregnancy.
“It’s also really important that you contact your midwife or local midwifery team if you have any questions or concerns. Help us to help you and your baby stay safe during this difficult time”.