A new “Pod” structure has been installed inside Hull Women and Children’s Hospital to create additional safe space allowing partners to attend scans and appointments.
Hull University Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust has been working for months on potential solutions to allow partners to accompany women to scan and antenatal appointments in line with new national guidance.
Head of Midwifery Lorraine Cooper said: “Our focus has been on keeping the women and babies in our care, as well as our own staff, as safe as possible in line with social distancing measures to prevent the spread of this deadly virus. For women not to have their partners with them at every appointment has caused some women and their partners great distress and we’re sorry for that.
“We have worked with our Estates teams and have created extra space which would allow one named partner to be with women for future scan and antenatal appointments.”
Maternity services at Hull University Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust are pleased to announce some relaxing of restrictions for visiting the ultrasound department and the outpatient department.
· From Tuesday 6th April, women attending the Women and Children’s Hospital will be able to bring one adult to their dating scan (usually undertaken around 12 weeks of pregnancy) and to scan appointments at the Early Pregnancy Assessment Unit
· From Monday 19th April, women attending the Antenatal Day Unit will be able to bring along one adult to the department
· From Thursday 29th April, women attending for growth scans throughout their pregnancy will be able to bring one adult to accompany them to their scan
· From Monday 17th May, women attending the Antenatal Clinic at the hospital will be able to bring one adult
These changes are possible due to the falling number of cases of Covid-19 in our area along with some extra precautions in place such as extra screens and the use of a remote buzzer system, similar to those used in some restaurants, to allow women and the person with them to maintain safe social distancing whilst waiting in the hospital.
Partners or the person with the woman is asked to continue to wear a face mask or covering and to wash your hands regularly.
Currently, the visiting arrangements on the Labour Ward, the Fatima Allam Birth Centre, Maple Ward, Rowan Ward and appointments in the community setting remain unchanged.
Lorraine Cooper said: “We will continue to monitor the effectiveness of these changes but if there is a rise in cases locally we may need to review these measures. We will continue to inform the public of any changes through all our normal channels.
“We encourage women not to cancel any appointments based on the relaxing of these restrictions.
“Thank you to everyone for being patient and understanding to support our staff to provide safe care.”
[Allison Coggan – Hull University Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust]