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Coronavirus update and advice: community midwifery

 

Changes to community midwifery services due to coronavirus

Due to the ongoing coronavirus situation, it is necessary that we make changes to the way we deliver our antenatal and postnatal care. These changes affect all women receiving antenatal and postnatal care from Guy's and St Thomas' NHS Foundation Trust and are in effect from Monday 30 March.

Please visit our preparing for your baby and helping mothers to breastfeed pages for more information.

We understand that many of you will be worried about the ongoing coronavirus situation and the impact it will have on your pregnancy and care. We would like to reassure you that our Hospital Birth Centre and Home from Home Centre are fully operational and if you are booked to have your baby at St Thomas' Hospital you are still able to give birth here. The changes we have made are with the safety of our patients and staff as our top priority.

  • To help our maternity team take good care of you and your baby, it is important that you attend all your booked appointments which may now be undertaken via a virtual or a face-to-face consultation. 
  • It is particularly important for pregnant women with pre-existing conditions such as diabetes, high blood pressure or heart conditions who are under the care of specialist maternal and fetal medicine services to attend the appointments offered to them.
  • All community appointments will be changed to either a telephone consultation or a face-to-face appointment with minimal contact and only to carry out essential health screening, such as a blood pressure measurement, dip test of urine and assessment of baby's growth by abdominal palpation and tape measure measurement.
  • We are now offering services at five community maternity sites only. They will be staffed with a core midwifery team and we will be working closely with our health visitor colleagues to ensure women and babies receive essential care.
  • Home visits will be reduced to an absolute minimum.
  • Consultant appointments, including those that currently occur in the local health centres, will take place at St Thomas’ Hospital.
  • All scans and specialist midwifery care will take place at St Thomas’ Hospital.

The five community maternity sites will be;

  • Gracefield Gardens Health Centre (SW16)
  • Clapham Manor Health Centre (SW4)
  • Mary Sheridan Centre – known as Wooden Spoon House (SE11)
  •  The Assisted Conception Unit (ACU) in Guy’s Hospital (SE1)
  • Artesian Health Centre (SE1)

Patients already booked with us will be contacted to explain how these changes affect their care and booked appointments.

If you have any queries about your referral, or if you have a planned appointment and do not hear from us two days before your next planned appointment, please contact us at: antenatalbookingappointments@gstt.nhs.uk

If you have any enquiries about your postnatal care please contact the team via email at: communitymidwiferyappointments@gstt.nhs.uk.

For general maternity enquiries which require an immediate response please call us on 020 7188 8001. Please only call this number if it is an urgent query.

Thank you for understanding these essential changes.

Stem cell collection suspended

Stem cell collection within the maternity unit has been suspended until further notice. This has been a very difficult decision to make, safety is our top priority and these measures are necessary to reduce the risk of spreading infection.

Visiting maternity during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic

We have made changes to our visiting policies in response to the coronavirus pandemic in order to reduce the spread of infection.

  • Women attending outpatient appointments (including antenatal visits, scans and blood tests) should attend the appointment unaccompanied.
  • Currently no visitors are permitted on the antenatal ward or postnatal.
  • For women in labour only one companion will be allowed. This companion can stay for the duration of labour but will need to leave four hours after delivery or earlier if the mother is transferred to another area.
  • Any other family members or friends will not be allowed to enter.

Please understand that this has been a very difficult decision to make, safety is our top priority and these measures are necessary to reduce the risk of spreading infection.