Maternity Care During Coronavirus Outbreak
This page was last reviewed on 31st July 2020
Stay at home if you have any symptoms and follow guidance available at: https://111.nhs.uk/covid-19
- A new persistent cough, or,
- A high temperature, or,
- A loss or change to your sense of taste or smell
If you do develop symptoms you can get a test by calling 119 or via the Government Website. It’s important to get a test within 5 days of the symptoms starting.
The following information provides you with details regarding your maternity care during the Coronavirus outbreak.
For general and regularly updated information we recommend you visit:
The NHS has produced maternity information for new or soon to be parents on COVID 19:
Information on Supporting new dads and partners during the Covid-19 pandemic can be found on NHS North West Boroughs Healthcare website.
It is expected that the majority of women who are exposed to Coronavirus will experience only mild or moderate flu like symptoms.
We understand that you will be worried about what Coronavirus means for you and your baby and we are doing all we can to keep you safe.
Please follow the Government advice
Stay at home:
• Only go outside for food, health reasons or work (where this absolutely cannot be done from home).
• Stay two metres (6ft) away from other people.
• Wash your hands as soon as you get home
If you work in an essential service, as deemed by the Government, and you are less than 28 weeks pregnant, seek advice from your employer.
Community Midwifery Appointments
If you have either a high temperature or a new persistent cough please DO NOT ATTEND any appointment.
If you think you may be pregnant please contact your community midwife via your GP surgery who will give you the telephone number to make contact.
Your referral for maternity care will be undertaken over the telephone by one of the Community Midwives, who will take your details and relevant history and then provide you with an appointment for your Booking appointment, (this will be over the telephone for the majority of women, but for some this may require a face to face consultation).
You antenatal booking appointment will be undertaken over the telephone, which your community midwife will arrange with you. This appointment will take some time to complete therefore please allow for at least an hour during which you will be asked lots of questions and given lots of information along with advice and guidance.
The Midwife will also discuss screening tests for you and your baby, and ask for your consent for the ones you choose. An electronic version of your booking notes can be sent to you prior to the booking appointment which will give you an indication of the questions that will be asked.
Following your booking appointment, you will then be invited for your dating scan and or nuchal scan (this will be explained to you at the booking consultation) at the Antenatal clinic either at the Thomas Linacre Centre or Leigh Infirmary where you will have your scan, your blood pressure taken; and a urine sample will be collected; you will be weighed and have any blood taken for any screening tests that you have requested. If you have had a face to face booking appointment some of the tests will have already been completed. You will be asked about Coronavirus symptoms as you arrive. Please attend alone unless you need support from a carer/relative (for example, if you have a disability and need support). If you require a review by a Doctor an appointment will be made for you to receive either a telephone consultation or in some circumstances a face to face appointment. Your midwife will advise you on this.
Your 16 week appointment will also take place over the telephone by your community midwife.
Your 20 week scan will take place at either Thomas Linacre centre or Leigh Infirmary.
From 24 weeks onwards your appointments will be face to face. You will receive a phone call from a member of the team prior to your appointment. You will be asked if you or any members of your family have any symptoms of Coronavirus.
If you do, you will be advised to stay at home for the appropriate period of self-isolation and your midwife will give you further guidance. You will only be tested for Coronavirus if you become unwell and need to be admitted to hospital.
When you attend your appointment please come alone, at the allotted time. Partners and family members will not be allowed to enter the building unless you need support from a carer/relative (for example, if you have a disability and need support).
The WWL Maternity service remains open, however, we have been required to make some changes to how we see women, specifically in Antenatal Clinic and the community. If you are due to be seen by a midwife or have an Antenatal Clinic appointment one of the Midwifery team will be in contact with you. Some appointments will be done via phone, however some will go ahead but prior to this a midwife will call you. We appreciate you may be feeling anxious and have some very specific questions so please in the first instance contact your own Midwife her number is on the front of your green notes, if she is not available please contact the community hubs.
Leigh – 01942 264004
Wigan South – 01942 481487
Wigan North – 01942 433602
Ashton – 01942 482476
Thomas Linacre Clinic Outpatients and Scan – 01942 774778
Maternity Triage – 01942 778628
If you think you are in labour or have any concerns about you or your baby please call Maternity Triage as usual and a midwife will be available to advise you. To assure you, the maternity services remain on site at the Royal Albert Edward Infirmary. We appreciate your patience at this time.
Visit www.rcog.org.uk for the latest guidance. All antenatal classes, hypnobirthing classes and breastfeeding support groups have been cancelled until further notice. Please see visiting information above – there is currently no visiting on the postnatal ward.
If you are having shared care with an Obstetrician you may need to attend your appointment – or you may receive a phone call from the Obstetrician.
If you are asked to attend the antenatal clinic you will be asked about Coronavirus symptoms as you arrive. If you are found to have a temperature, you will be asked to go home immediately and will receive a telephone call from a doctor. Please attend alone unless you need support from a carer/relative (for example, if you have a disability and need support)
If you have a scan appointment, please attend alone unless you need support from a carer/relative (for example, if you have a disability and need support), at the allotted time.
You will be asked about Coronavirus symptoms as you arrive. If you are found to have a temperature, your scan may be postponed and you may be asked to go home immediately and will receive a telephone call from a doctor.
If your baby’s pattern of movements changes or reduces in number, please call and speak to a Midwife promptly:
Triage on: 01942 7878628
If you are advised to attend Triage or Antenatal Day Assessment, please attend alone unless you need support from a carer/relative (for example, if you have a disability and need support) at the allotted time. You will have your temperature checked and be asked about Coronavirus symptoms as you arrive.
Face to face classes are currently suspended.
The Local Maternity System in Greater Manchester has developed an online resource for Antenatal Education. The resource is an Antenatal Education section on the existing My Birth My Choice website. This is now live and can be accessed through the website.
Care in labour
In Labour, when you are ready to come to hospital, please call in advance. The midwife will ask you about your Labour and some additional questions about your wellbeing and that of your family.
We will do everything we can to respect your birth choices; however we have to limit you to one birth partner.
You will have your temperature checked and be asked about Coronavirus symptoms as you arrive.
In some circumstances our team are wearing additional protective clothing including face masks.
If you have symptoms of or confirmed Coronavirus you will be cared for in isolation with a team who will have additional protective clothing – including face protection and eye wear. In an emergency this may cause a delay, as staff need to have appropriate additional protective clothing for the safety of
you, your baby and the staff caring for you.
Induction of labour
If you are booked to come into hospital for induction of Labour you will be contacted by a midwife from the Maternity ward who will call you on the evening before you are due to come into hospital between 16:30 and 18:30.
The midwife will ask you about your pregnancy and some additional questions about your wellbeing and that of your family. We have to limit you to one birth partner.
Planned caesarean sections
If you are booked to come into hospital for a planned caesarean section you will be contacted by a midwife from the Maternity ward who will call you on the evening before you are due to come into hospital between 16:30 and 18:30.
The midwife will ask you about your pregnancy and some additional questions about your well-being and that of your family. We have to limit you to one birth partner.
Birth at home
We have reviewed our home birth service and are in a position to be able to offer this as a choice of place of birth in addition to birth on the delivery suite for women who meet the low risk birth criteria. There may be occasions when we would have to initiate a temporary suspension of the service.
Women who are symptomatic of the Coronavirus are recommended to birth in an Obstetric Unit, where additional monitoring of maternal and baby wellbeing can be facilitated.
After your baby is born
Once your baby is born and as long as you and your baby are well, we will encourage you, with support, to go home as soon as possible.
Your care will be personalised to your needs and those of your baby. Baby screening tests will arranged by your midwife. If you have symptoms of or confirmed Coronavirus you will be cared for in isolation with your baby, and the team will wear additional protective clothing. You will be encouraged and supported to breastfeed.
Should you need to stay in hospital, your partner will not be able to stay with you; we have introduced limited visiting (partner only) on the Maternity Ward
Following your discharge home, you will receive a telephone call the next day by your community midwife who will undertake a risk assessment and determine if a face to face visit is required. You will also receive a telephone call from the Infant feeding team following your discharge home who are additionally providing a virtual clinic to support women who are experiencing feeding problems.
If you and your baby are well a midwife will visit on Day 5 to check on you and your baby’s well-being, at this visit the midwife will undertake the new born screening blood tests. If you or a member of your family are unwell then this visit may be delayed, a midwife will discuss this with you.
Registering the birth of your baby
The registration of births has been suspended temporarily until 30 April 2020 – please see more information at:
Infant Feeding Team
This team is still available on the Maternity and Neonatal units to support mothers. However the amount of visits has decreased. Mothers can still receive infant feeding support from the virtual clinic which is run by our Infant Feeding Coordinator.
This can be accessed by using the following URL: https://nhsattend.vc/WWLInfantfeeding or by ringing 07384459308 or 07384459308 for further information or support.
If you are in self-isolation or are shielding yourself and you don’t have the support of family and friends but you need help with non-medical issues, Wigan Council have set up a dedicated helpline. Call them on 01942 489018 or fill in an online ‘Self-isolation Welfare Support’ form.