Maternity – Postnatal

Women’s Health Unit
Level 3
Torbay Hospital
Lowes Bridge
Torquay TQ2 7AA

Tel: 01803 654603

John MacPherson Ward

This ward is where women are cared for during antenatal admissions for pregnancy problems or induction of labour and after they have had their baby.

The ward provides:

  • 20 beds providing care and support for mother and baby.
  • Specialist care for women and babies who require special support following birth.
  • Breastfeeding support with a dedicated Infant Feeding Specialist Midwife.
  • Examination of the baby by a Paediatrician or specially trained midwife of all hospital births, within 24 hours of delivery.
  • Early discharge from 2 hours onwards (this discharge may be from delivery suite).

Side rooms/ amenity beds

We try to allocate our side rooms for women who are undergoing Induction of Labour or who need the room on medical grounds. If you wish to have a single room, and if there are rooms available it may be possible at a statutory fee. The side rooms are limited and the staff may have to move you back to an open ward if the room is needed. For more information, please ask your midwife.

Partners are allowed to stay overnight but restrictions may apply. For further details, please speak to the midwives or see our maternity unit visiting times page.

Visiting hours

Visiting hours for the Maternity Unit, along with our visiting policy, visitor information and parking.

Safety and security

The ward is secured at all times. You can play your part by:

  • Being present when any examination takes place.
  • Asking the identity of any staff who wish to examine your baby.
  • Accompanying your baby for any examinations off the ward.
  • Being vigilant at all times and talking to a member of staff if you see anything suspicious.
  • Your baby will be nursed at your bedside day and night. This is called ‘rooming in’. Your baby will have two name bands on his/her ankles. If one of these comes off, please report it to a member of staff, so that it can be replaced immediately.


Please try to keep belongings to a minimum and store them off the floor. This will enable the hotel services staff to clean around your bed area with minimum disruption.

We also advise not to bring valuables into the hospital.


Most bedsides are fitted with pay TV/telephone. Some services such as radio and hospital information can be accessed free of charge.

Bounty distributor

The Bounty distributor visits several times a week distributing packs of free baby product samples and literature. Most mothers will receive a pack at the bedside, but if you do not receive one, please ask a member of staff or your team midwife when home for your free pack.

Baby photographer

A photographer visits the postnatal ward and will be happy to photograph your baby. You may wish to bring in a special garment for the baby to wear. The fees for the various photographs are available on request.

Registering the birth

After the birth of your baby you will have six weeks in which to register his/her birth. This can be done by appointment at the Registrar of Births office, preferably at the office in the area of baby’s birth.

Going home

The length of your stay in hospital will depend on how you and your baby progress, how confident you feel and the support you have available. Your named midwife will discuss and plan this with you. At home a midwife will visit as necessary until the tenth day after birth, and then if all is well, your baby will be transferred to the care of a health visitor.

If you need additional advice from a midwife up to 28 days after the birth of your baby, please contact your community team. For urgent queries please call delivery suite on (01803) 654631. In the event of an emergency please dial 999.

We strongly recommend taking your baby home in an approved car seat. Prior to the baby’s birth, it is a good idea for parents to familiarise themselves with the installation of the seat. Securing the seat remains the responsibility of the driver.

General Practitioner & postnatal check

Your family doctor will be informed of the birth. Please make an appointment to see your GP 6-8 weeks after the birth for your postnatal check.

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