Telling your GP and/or Midwife promptly will help to make sure you receive maternity healthcare that takes into account all your health needs and preferences. You can book an appointment with your GP or directly with your Midwife as soon as you know that you’re pregnant.
It’s best to see them as early as possible to obtain the information you need to have a healthy pregnancy, and because some tests, such as screening for sickle cell and thalassaemia should be done before you’re 10 weeks’ pregnant.
The Midwife works with the Doctor to give care to women having a baby, both before birth and for ten days after the baby is delivered.
If you become pregnant please telephone the surgery, the receptionists will refer you to the midwife.
The Midwife will arrange to see you. Ideally between 8 – 10 weeks of pregnancy, when she will ‘book’ you for antenatal care according to circumstances. This will normally be for delivery at Winchester Hospital but can be at Southampton if you request it. If the pregnancy is uncomplicated you will only need to attend hospital for an anomaly scan at approximately 20 weeks and for delivery.
Home deliveries are supported by the team if clinically appropriate.
The midwife will see you regularly throughout the pregnancy and for 7-14 days after the birth.
The midwife works closely with the Health Visitors who will support you and the baby after delivery. The Health Visitor will contact you antenatally to discuss the impending birth.
The doctor will see you for your six week postnatal check and will examine the newborn baby if delivered at home or under midwife care in the hospital.
The Midwife will be in regular contact with your doctor throughout your pregnancy.
The role of the midwife
A Midwife is a qualified nurse who has undertaken further training to provide and promote normal midwifery.
They help you to prepare for motherhood and promote good health for yourself and your baby by advising on the effects of drinking, smoking and good diet whilst you are pregnant.
The Midwife guides you through your pregnancy and endeavours to detect any problems and make relevant referrals if necessary.
Healthy Start is a government scheme that aims to improve the health of pregnant women and mothers on benefits or low incomes, all pregnant women under 18 years of age and children who are under 5 years of age. Families who are supported by the scheme receive vouchers to spend on milk (including infant formula), fresh fruit and vegetables.
Your antenatal care
When you first learn that you’re pregnant, get in touch with a Midwife or GP as soon as possible. Ideally this should be by 10 weeks of your pregnancy. Telling your GP and/or Midwife promptly will help to make sure you receive maternity healthcare that takes into account all your health needs and preferences.