Healthy mums and their new babies do best in the home environment. So if you and your baby are well, we encourage early transfer to the care of your family and community midwife.
If you've had a normal delivery in our Birth Centre or Delivery Suite, you can usually go home as soon as 6-10 hours after birth. If you've had an epidural or instrumental delivery, a short stay on one of our postnatal wards is normal. If you've had a C-section, you can be transferred to the community after 24 hours, providing the recovery process has gone well.
It's important to remember that longer stays may be necessary as each birth journey is individual.
Before you leave hospital to go home with your new family, you will be given a set of postnatal notes, with information about your labour, delivery and postnatal care. These will be referred to by your community midwife who visits you at home after you leave the hospital to plan your care moving forward. Discharge information will be sent to your GP which will also give details of your birth and your new baby.
You’ll also be given a Personal Child Health Record (PCHR) – sometimes referred to as the ‘red book’ - which is a record of your child’s growth, development and use of health services. Details of your baby’s newborn examination and hearing screening will be recorded in here and it will remain as a record for all immunisations throughout childhood.
Whether you have your care in the clinic or at home, your local team of midwives will provide postnatal care and support for you for a minimum of ten days after the birth. You will not usually receive care every day but usually you will have a minimum of three contacts with us.
Our community team will:
- Weigh and carry out routine screening tests on your baby with your informed consent
- Check both you and your baby remain healthy
- Explain various choices to promote good health for both you and your baby
- Offer family planning advice