Maternity Services

Women's Health Unit
COVID-19 – Visiting and attending appointments

Our maternity services are all fully open. However, the COVID-19 pandemic has meant we have had to restrict all visiting, and women must attend all their appointments alone except for the 12 week and 20 week scan (see below).

Please remember: When attending an appointment or visiting, you must follow our social distancing and PPE guidance – further information is in our ‘COVID-19 Advice for people comingto Torbay Hospital andother Trust sites’ leaflet.

Appointments: It is important that women continue to attend scheduled appointments. All antenatal and postnatal appointments must be attended alone by the mother and baby. We are making two exceptions, for the 12 week scan and the 20 week scan, to which one nominated person from the same household may also accompany the mother. We have revised our policy to also allow mothers to be accompanied for the 12 week scan in light of national guidance published in September – you may read more about this here. Please contact your midwifery team for advice and support as needed.

For urgent or emergency issues please contact Delivery Suite 01803 654631.

Visiting: In order to maintain safety and social distancing measures, we are allowing restricted visiting for women in labour and on our postnatal ward, as below. Otherwise we have a strict ‘no visiting’ policy.

Delivery Suite and Whitelake Birthing Rooms at Newton Abbot Community Hospital – one birth partner may be present during labour.

John MacPherson Ward – a partner or supporter from the same household may attend for one hour, by prior arrangement. To book please call 01803 654603 between 9.30am – 10am; you will be allocated one hour’s visiting time between 2pm and 5pm on the same day. For women who are having an induction of labour on John MacPherson Ward, their birth partner can attend between 9am and 5pm.

We understand how difficult the visiting and appointment restrictions are for mothers and their families. However, we have had to put these restrictions in place in order to stop the spread of the virus:

  • We have a duty of care to protect women and their babies, before and after birth
  • While there is no evidence that pregnant women are more likely to get COVID-19 than anyone else, COVID-19 can be passed to babies before they are born
  • There is an increased risk of premature labour should pregnant women catch COVID-19
  • We must also do all we can to protect our staff and other service users

We will not tolerate abuse to our staff who are doing their best to protect mothers, babies, other service users and staff. We ask everyone to be respectful of this and thank you for your patience, understanding and cooperation during this time.

Please be aware that all maternity units will be able to make changes at different rates due to how the maternity unit is set up, and available space. However, please be assured that we are doing everything we can to implement change as quickly as we can whilst maintaining safety for women, their babies and loved ones, other service users and our staff.

The maternity service at Torbay Hospital offers Midwifery Lead and Consultant Lead care for approximately 2,500 women per annum. The service is provided by midwifery teams based in the community giving antenatal, intrapartum and postnatal care both at home, children’s centres and in the hospital.

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