Bournemouth Hospital to encourage more home births
THE Royal Bournemouth Hospital (RBH) is looking into options to create a new midwifery-led unit on its site in Castle Lane.
The unit would still be located at RBH but with an improved layout and located closer to the hospital’s road, improving access for arriving mums. The location would have dedicated car parking bays and would also improve emergency transfers by ambulance should mothers unexpectedly need obstetric support, available at Poole Hospital.
The Trust has applied for planning permission for the new unit to see if the option is viable, and if the plans are given support the unit could be in use by spring 2014.
RBH’s midwifery unit has always promoted normal birth and will provide the same services that it currently does but will be more suited to support the ethos of ‘home from home’ births.
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Acting head of midwifery, Pauline Hawkes, said: “I’m really excited about having a purpose built unit for midwife-led births. Being located deep within a hospital building is not ideal for our parents-to-be and this unit will enable us to provide a more homely, rather than a clinical, environment.”
In line with other birthing units up and down the country, post natal care is provided more and more in the community. Pauline Hawkes added: “This is also an opportunity for us to work differently and better for women; for example some staff will be able to work more in the community, supporting mums in their homes and local children’s centres.”
The Bournemouth midwifery birth service, which sees around 380 births a year in the birth unit and a further 70 home births, is for low risk women who are expected to have a straight forward birth. Mothers do not have immediate access to highly technically skilled obstetric staff, such as obstetricians, anaesthetists or neonatal nurses. Mothers and babies needing this support are transferred to Poole Hospital, which provides a full obstetric service.