During your pregnancy - Antenatal care

Ultrasound scan

Contact your GP or community midwife as soon as you think you are pregnant. They will help you to plan your care and decide where you would like your baby to be born.

Antenatal Clinics   The Alexandra Hospital 01527 512004
Kidderminster Hospital and Treatment Centre 01562 512376
Worcestershire Royal 01905 760659

There’s strong evidence that booking in with your community midwife as early as possible will help you and your baby to stay happy and healthy. Your community midwife can also provide lots of information, answer your questions and help you to book appointments for things like scans.

Arranging your care

When you first think you may be pregnant, contact your GP or local community midwife directly. They will help you to decide where you would like to have your care while you are pregnant. They will also discuss with you where you would like to birth your baby.

Your plan of care will be discussed and agreed with you. Your community midwife may want to refer you to other members of the maternity team. If so this will be discussed with you.

It is your decision how your plan is created and who is involved.

If you are not sure about anything, please ask.

A good tip!
Book as early as you can with you community midwife. If you can before you have been pregnant for 12 weeks. There is lots of evidence that shows that you and your baby will be fitter and happier if you have your first appointment early. Your community midwife will have lots of information to help you, can answer your questions and arrange your scans etc.

Midwife-led care

Mums-to-be who are expected to have a straight forward pregnancy are known as low risk.

Low risk care is provided by your local community midwife. This Midwife led care can be accessed at GP surgery, childrens centres or maternity hub. Having your baby at home or in hospital are options for all low risk mums and their families.

Consultant-led care

Mums-to-be who may have had complications while pregnant or in a previous pregnancy will be offered a choice of who looks after them.

This can be provided by both the community midwife and the hospital doctor or just the hospital doctor. Appointments to see the doctor can be at a consultant clinic convenient to where you live.

It is recommended that you give birth to your baby in hospital. Again your care can be provided by both the midwifery and medical teams.

Ante-natal Anaesthetic Clinic

We provide an ante-natal anaesthetic clinic weekly based at Worcestershire Royal and a fortnightly clinic at the Alexandra Hospital.

Obstetric Anaesthetists are doctors who specialise in looking after women in pregnancy and labour, especially those who are at a higher risk of needing a caesarean delivery or who have medical problems that may affect their pregnancy.

Referral to see an anaesthetist when pregnant could be for advice on pain relief in labour, how you would be looked after if you needed a caesarean section or about problems related to epidurals or labour anaesthesia in the past.

The following links provide more information on exactly who should be referred to see an anaesthetist during their pregnancy and specific conditions that may need anaesthetic involvement:

Ultrasound scans

Having a scan is very exciting - you get to see your baby! But it's not just for fun. Scans can tell you lots of information about your baby. They check that your baby is growing and developing normally.

Scans are usually performed by radiographers or midwives who are specially trained in ultrasound and are known as sonographers. The sonographer puts some cold gel on your tummy and moves a small, hand-held probe (a transducer) over your skin to get views of the baby. High frequency sound waves are used to transmit an image of your baby onto a computer screen.

Ultrasound has been used in pregnancy for nearly 30 years and medical research has found no side effects. However, experts agree that it shouldn't be done without clear medical reasons and that it should be limited to the minimum.

A good tip!

When you have a scan in pregnancy you always need to have a full bladder. Please drink 1 pint of water 1 1/2 hours prior to scan. Try not to go to the toilet until after your scan. Easier said than done but it helps your baby to be in the right place. We can then get a good picture of what is going on.

Your first scan is usually done when you are around 12 weeks pregnant. The date your baby is expected to be born will be confirmed at this appointment. The next one is done at 20 weeks of pregnancy. This will check the physical wellbeing of your baby. A scan takes about 15 to 20 minutes to do.

You can buy scan photographs for £5 each or £10 for three. The machine only takes coins so please remember to bring the right amount with you.

Maternity Day Assessment Unit

Sometimes we need to keep a closer eye on you and your baby as the baby grows.

If you don't need to see a doctor and are more than 20 weeks pregnant we have a Maternity Day Assessment Unit at Kidderminster Hopspital and treatment centre. Any of the team looking after you can arrange for you to come into Kidderminster hospital for a check-up. This could be your GP, community midwife or your hospital doctor or midwife.

The appointment could be to:

  • Provide you with reassurance/answer your questions

  • Help with the monitoring of you and your baby using scans, blood tests or baby heart beat monitoring

  • Talk you through the results of tests

  • The Alexandra Maternity Day Assessment Unit is based next to Ward 15 on level 1.

  • At Worcestershire Royal Hospital the unit is based on the Lavender antenatal ward.

The units are open on Monday to Friday between 9am and 9pm. You will be met and cared for by experienced midwives.

Multiple pregnancy support

Are you expecting more than one baby?

The Multiple Pregnancy Support Group is a specialist group for mums-to-be who are expecting twins or more. The group is run by an experienced midwife. The sessions are held at the Lavender Children's Centre in Worcester and also at the Alexandra Hospital in Redditch.

During a typical session you might discuss topics such as the delivery of twins, positions for feeding, safe cot sharing, routines, equipment and support networks. The group aims to be fun and friendly while packed with useful information.

Come along and meet others mothers to be of multiples and discuss topics of interest such as feeding positions, cot sharing and support groups.

For more information contact Karen Halfpenny on 01527 512103.

Physiotherapy

During pregnancy some mums-to-be suffer with pelvic girdle pain. This is a pain that is often one-sided and may be concentrated in your buttocks. It may appear to jump from side to side or be accompanied by a general back pain or pain at the front of your pelvis.

If you have these symptoms your community midwife can refer you to a physiotherapist who specialise in caring for pregnant women. The physiotherapist will assess you and will provide on-going support and advice to help you manage while you are pregnant.

Healthy Weight Advice programme

It is important to maintain a healthy weight during pregancny. We have the Living Well service who offer help and advice to promote a healthy life style for you and your family.

This service can be access by women with a BMI of 30 and above. We will get in touch with you and work with you to agree a healthy eating programme. It will be just right for you, especially as you are pregnant.

The aim of the programme is to help you to control your weight gain while you are pregnant. After you have your baby there will be advice right through to your baby's second birthday.

Your midwife can also arrange for you to be seen by a dietician if, for example, you are diabetic.

Urgent advice and assessment – triage service

The triage service is based at the hospital and provides emergency help and support. If something is not quite right and you want to speak to someone straight away please get in touch. We often see mums to be who:

  • can't feel the baby move when they expect to
  • suddenly start to have an unusual pain
  • are bleeding
  • are suffering from itching
If you need advice or to see someone urgently give us a ring on 01905 733196 (Worcestershire Royal Hospital). A member of our team will take your call and let you know what best to do next.

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