New chairs give dads extra time

Thursday 19 June 2014

Couple with their baby

New dads bonding with their babies can spend extra time supporting their partners thanks to new reclining chairs on the Maternity Unit at St Thomas’ Hospital.

Instead of having to leave partners at 8pm when official visiting hours finish, dads can now stay overnight on the postnatal ward helping to look after their new arrival.

The chairs were officially launched on Father’s Day (Sunday 15 June) as dads stayed on the ward for the first time.

Sachin Pattani, from north London, became a dad for the first time when baby Leeya was born on June 11 and he helped trial the chairs soon after his wife Uzma gave birth.

He says: “I felt really lucky to have the option to stay all night and support my wife. I think it’s crucial for dads to be able to stay and get the hands on experience they need to help their partner. I think the chairs will help all future parents and ease the strain at what can be a daunting time.”

Lynne Pacanowski, Director of Midwifery at Guy’s and St Thomas’, says: “We are so pleased to be able to welcome a partner to stay overnight on the postnatal ward. It’s so important that they can take part in caring for both mother and baby.

“This extra time spent with mum and baby can help family bonding and reduce anxiety and stress. We hope this initiative will enhance the care we provide.”

The simple yet innovative idea came in response to patient feedback and is also recommended by the Royal College of Midwives to enhance the involvement of fathers in the care of their baby. 

The Maternity Unit was awarded funding from the Department of Health to purchase the reclining chairs.

Last updated: June 2014

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