COVID-19: Information for women accessing Maternity Services

Your health, your family and our staff are our priorities during this COVID-19 pandemic period.

We have put in place a number of measures to keep our community safe while continuing to provide you with quality care at this time.

If you are sick with COVID symptoms or have been to a COVID exposure site, please call us before you come into the hospital or appointment.

If you have any concerns during your pregnancy, including concerns for your baby’s movements, bleeding or any other urgent concerns, please call us immediately for advice.

For our Maternity Service contact numbers, click here.

Routine Screening

There are COVID-19 screening measures in place for everyone entering our hospitals.

As a precautionary measure ALL people will be screened on entry, and visitors are required to wear a mask.

You will also be asked:

  • Have you returned from overseas or from a COVID-19 area of concern in the past 14 days?
  • Have you had close contact with a person confirmed or suspected of having COVID-19?
  • Are you feeling unwell with any flu-like symptoms?

If you answer yes to any of these questions, or have a temperature of 37.5 degrees or above, you will not be permitted to enter the facility.

COVID-19 testing is available at our fever clinics. For opening times and locations click here.

Visiting Restrictions in Place

Visiting restrictions are in place for all maternity and women’s care units across the District.

From 15 August 2021:

  • Women can nominate one support person during her labour, birth and post-delivery
  • We are continuing with our usual practice of supporting women to return home as soon as possible after birth to be with their family and loved ones.

For exceptional circumstances we encourage families to discuss their individual needs with staff. We know these restrictions can be challenging, and we appreciate your understanding during this time.  For more information about Maternity Services click here.

Changes to Pregnancy Care appointments

We have reduced the number of face-to-face pregnancy care visits (antenatal clinics) and ask that pregnant women attending appointments at the hospital, come on their own whenever possible.

We will continue to contact women individually to plan their pregnancy care. Care will include telehealth consultations over the phone or video as well as face to face visits.

Our midwives are available 24 hours a day for ongoing support. Please don’t hesitate to contact your midwife or doctor for more information.

For more information about Maternity Services click here.

Stillbirth Prevention

Social distancing measures have meant that there have been changes to the way pregnancy care is being provided.

We understand that pregnant women are anxious about COVID-19 and this worry may lead them to avoid seeking care. Please call us immediately if you are concerned, it’s safe to visit your doctor, midwife or clinic for pregnancy care.

The following information provides important information about Covid-19 in pregnancy and stillbirth prevention. Click on the image or link below to download a copy of the flyer.

Childbirth Education/Preparation for Parenthood

During the pandemic period we have cancelled all face-to-face childbirth education classes until further notice. Online classes are available.

This measure is in keeping with social distancing guidelines which are in place to protect us all.

Labour and Birth

You have the right to a safe and positive birth experience.

Your support person will be asked the same screening questions and will only be allowed entry to the hospital if they have no symptoms of illness or suspected infection.

If you have suspected or confirmed COVID-19 infection:

  • you will be asked to wear a mask over your face and nose during labour
  • you will still be able to move in labour and birth in the position of your choice
  • you will have access to a range of pain relief options
  • water immersion and water birth will no longer be an option.
  • You will be recommended to have continuous fetal heart rate monitoring in labour

After birth – Midwifery visits in your Home

If you and your baby are well, going home as soon as possible after the birth is best and will be encouraged. To support you, we will offer you Midwifery in home visiting and telephone or telehealth (video) visits.

Staff will call you each day to check on you and your baby and ask if you need support or a visit.

Feeding your baby

Skin-to-skin contact at birth and breastfeeding is encouraged.  It is important to pay careful attention to hand washing (hand hygiene) as well as taking care not to cough or sneeze over your baby.

If you are suspected or confirmed to have COVID-19 infection, we will encourage you to wear a mask when feeding or expressing breast milk for your baby. Where possible, have someone else help with the care of the baby.

Videos: information for mothers and families

COVID-19 in pregnancy

COVID-19 Keep in contact with your doctor

COVID-19 Attendance at appointments

COVID-19 and giving birth

COVID-19 Not separating babies

Have you got questions?

For more information, please call your Maternity care provider or the Birth Suite of the hospital you are booked with.

For our Maternity Service contact numbers, click here.