Please read and share this message from our Head of Midwifery…

“To all the women and families who are currently receiving maternity care at Frimley Park Hospital or planning to have your baby with us:

We recognise that this is a worrying and frightening time and that everyone is waiting for news of what may change. I wanted to update you as the Head of Midwifery for Frimley Park Hospital on how we are responding to the challenges of Coronavirus in our maternity department.

The midwifery team at Frimley Park hospital have been working hard planning services in the event of several different eventualities. As we make changes we will ensure these are shared.

The central focus of all decisions is keeping women and their babies as safe as possible. Part of the process for making decisions is also looking at how we keep all members of the midwifery and obstetric team safe. We need to keep staff safe so they are available to care for everyone during this uncertain time.

At present we are trying to keep all midwifery services running as near to usual as possible. We have taken a range of steps to maintain our services. Including:
• Changing visiting arrangements;
• Introducing calling women before appointments to discuss theirs and their families symptoms;
• Asking women who call our maternity services if they or their family have or have had symptoms.

In our plans, changes are staged. Information will be released when we are at the point of needing to make changes and not in advance. Many plans are not fixed and will be dependent on how the situation evolves.

Currently, our Mulberry Birth Centre and home-birth service are running as normal. There may come a point when this needs to change. If this needs to happen then decisions will be made with very heavy hearts but the safety of all women and staff must be our main driver at this time. I promise if we close these services we will be aiming to reinstate them as soon as possible.

We are still committed to women having a positive birth experience with us but recognise that for some, you may not get the opportunity to have the birth experience you hoped for.

Our focus remains the wellbeing of women, families and our staff. There are no previous examples to follow and some of the decisions we make will turn out to be excellent decisions. Hindsight may show that we should have made different decisions and we will learn and adapt as quickly as possible if we have concerns.

Please be reassured that we have made plans for different eventualities and are prepared for adapting circumstances. Your safety and wellbeing is our main focus as we move forward.

Thank you for your understanding and support during this period.”

Danielle Perkins (Head of Midwifery, Frimley Park Hospital)