When you call the maternity unit in labour or if you are scheduled to come in for a caesarean section, we will be asking you if you have any symptoms of COVID-19. It is important you let us know so we can care for you in the right place.
You will be asked to enter the maternity unit through a separate entrance. There is a designated area for your care. Healthcare professionals will be wearing personal protective equipment (PPE) at all times. We know this may be strange at first but we will try to make you feel as relaxed as possible. We will also ask you and your birth partner to wear a mask, unless you are using gas and air.
We will check your oxygen levels more often during labour using a simple finger saturation monitor. It is also recommended that your baby’s heart is monitored continuously throughout labour – you can find out more about monitoring in our birth section.
National guidance states that women with suspected or positive COVID-19 should not use the birthing pool for labour or birth. It is safe to use Entonox (gas and air) and we will show you how to use this if you would like to try it.
The RCOG has recommended an epidural for labour if you are unwell – we will discuss this with you at the time.
For emergency caesarean births, staff will need to put on PPE. This is time-consuming but necessary to keep staff safe. This could mean it takes us longer than usual from deciding you need a caesarean to delivering your baby.