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Maternity visiting guidance

Visiting arrangements to paediatrics, neonatal units, all other wards and Emergency Departments is available here.

Updated 23 May 2022

Following an update to national guidance in Wales on COVID-19 infection prevention and control, a number of changes have been made for maternity visiting, attending obstetric scans (ultrasounds) and maternity appointments at hospitals and maternity sites. Visiting guidance and information on Paediatric and Neonatal services is available on the general hospital visiting page.

Local assessments and policies on maternity visiting 

Maternity visiting guidance across North Wales continues to be informed by community transmission rates, COVID-19 admission numbers, hospital outbreaks, Infection Prevention Control Policy and local risk assessments are reviewed weekly. The situation in a health care setting can change rapidly and it is important to check with the ward/ department/ community site at that time.

All visiting will be by appointment and all visitors will require an individual risk assessment to be completed both in advance of and on arrival of an agreed visit for both exceptional and general visiting arrangements, in order to keep patients, staff and visitors safe. To request further information on how we assess maternity visiting arrangements, you can get in touch here.

Lateral Flow testing (LFD)

People visiting will no longer be asked to provide evidence of a negative Lateral Flow test (LFD) test when attending maternity settings. 

They will, however, still be screened (asked to complete a questionnaire and have their temperature taken and recorded). They must remain vigilant for symptoms in the interests of protecting or patients, babies, staff and visitors.

Testing positive for COVID-19

Anyone who tests positive for COVID-19 or has symptoms, will not be permitted to visit whilst they are infectious. 

Maternity visiting

All visitors to the maternity ward or unit will be required to complete a screening questionnaire including a temperature check before entry. Visitors are not permitted in areas whereby there are suspected or confirmed cases of COVID-19, except in exceptional circumstances.

With prior arrangement, a single birth partner or nominated person can visit the maternity unit for up to four hours. This remains strictly by appointment only, arranged directly with the maternity ward/ unit. There remains a limit on the number of people allowed in an area at one time to protect all of our patients, babies, staff and other visitors.

Established labour, attending theatre and emergency caesarean sections

A single birth partner or nominated person can attend with their partner when they are in active labour. They can also attend theatre for an elective or emergency caesarean section.

Visitors must comply at all times with the following safety measures that are in place:

  • All visitors are required to complete a screening questionnaire including a temperature check upon entry
  • Partners/ visitors are not permitted in areas whereby there are suspected or confirmed cases of Covid-19 (Red Areas) or onto cohorted Amber Areas where the woman is awaiting her swab results to avoid risk to others
  • Visiting for up to four hours, must be arranged by appointment by contacting the ward/ unit directly
  • Wear a fluid repellent facemask at all times in a health care setting, masks will be provided
  • Follow advice and guidance from staff and answering questions as part of a visitor check list
  • Adhere to instructions and information on keeping a safe distance from others
  • Good hand hygiene and washing of hands, including the use of the alcohol gel provided on the ward/ unit
  • Good respiratory hygiene – ‘Catch it, bin it, kill it approach’
  • Keep personal items to a minimum and on person at all times
  • Children under the age of 16 will not be permitted in the inpatient area or accompany women to appointments. In exceptional circumstances this can be discussed with the midwife/ person in charge
  • The allocated partner must remain as the only visitor during the admission period and should remain in the household bubble to ensure reduction in risk of infection.

Appointments

Those attending an appointment will be required to wear a facemask which will be provided, please follow COVID-19 guidance provided in your appointment letter and also by the health care professionals during your appointment. 

Providing that the single birth partner or nominated person is not testing positive for COVID-19 or showing symptoms they can attend all; Antenatal Clinics in a hospital setting, Consultant Antenatal Clinics in hospitals and other community health care settings and all Obstetrics scan appointments also in hospitals and other community health care settings.

Maternity Outpatient Assessment Unit and Early Labour Assessment Unit

Unfortunately, when a scan is undertaken at the Maternity Outpatient Assessment Unit and Early Labour Assessment Units in Glan Clwyd Hospital previous restrictions remain in place. This is because we are unable to meet the social distancing requirements in those areas. 

Additional support

Consideration should also be given to the needs of women who require additional support/essential assistance to access maternity services and for whom reasonable adjustments may be required.  This may be in the following situations, which are by no means exhaustive:

  • Women with a mental health issue, a learning disability or autism, where not being accompanied would cause them to be distressed
  • Women with cognitive impairment who may be unable to recall health advice provided
  • Where the treatment/procedure is likely to cause the woman distress and the partner/nominated other can provide support
  • Where a woman has specific communication needs and may require support to understand information.

Keeping in touch with family and friends

We encourage family and friends of patients under our care to consider alternative ways of keeping in touch. This includes the use of our hospitals’ free WiFi to use FaceTime or video calling. We can help make this happen and inpatients can loan an IPAD from our can Patient Advice and Liaison Support Service (PALS) to use on the ward.

Patient Advice and Liaison Support Service (PALS)

They are here to help you and will do their best to resolve issues quickly and directly with those concerned. If you have an enquiry about visiting restrictions or a concern about a friend or relative who has been admitted, please contact PALS, 9am to 5pm, Monday to Friday except Bank holidays).