Hospitals relax Covid rules on maternity appointments

Partners will be able to attned all pregnancy scans at Ipswich, Colchester and Clacton hospitals from Monday Picture...

Partners will be able to attned all pregnancy scans at Ipswich, Colchester and Clacton hospitals from Monday Picture: ARCHANT - Credit: Archant

Hospitals in Ipswich, Colchester and Clacton have relaxed rules on partners attending pregnancy scans.

Changes to antenatal and maternity arrangements were announced by the East Suffolk and North Essex NHS Foundation Trust (ESNEFT).

Covid restrictions had previously been in place on partners attending appointments.

ESNEFT made the announcement following the lifting of lockdown restrictions.

The Trust said that, from Monday, partners will be able to attend all scans.

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A rise in Covid-19 cases and the introduction of a second lockdown had forced hospitals in the region to review visiting rules.

Appointments for maternity patients were also affected by changes, with ESNEFT - which manages Ipswich, Colchester and Clacton hospitals - permitting one adult from the same household as the expectant mum to attend the 12 and 20-week scans.

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Anna Shasha, director of midwifery at ESNEFT, said arrangements would be kept under regular review, and that expectant mums and partners updated on any changes.

On Friday, ESNEFT announced on Twitter: “We’ve made some changes to antenatal and maternity arrangements.

From Monday, someone who is pregnant will be able to bring a partner with them to all scans at Ipswich, Colchester and Clacton hospitals.”

At West Suffolk Hospital, partners are welcome to accompany expectant mums to their 12-week dating scans, 20-week anomaly scans and growth scans.

Rules around antenatal and maternity appointments were strictly tightened at all hospitals the first wave of the pandemic.

ESNEFT was able to change some policies on its antenatal and postnatal wards in late June, allowing visitors to see a mother and baby on its wards for the first time in more than three months.

From July 6, one adult from the same household could attend 12-week and 20-week scans with a pregnant woman at Ipswich, Colchester and Clacton hospitals.

Visitors, including anyone attending out-patient appointments, at all hospitals in Suffolk and north Essex, are required to wear a mask or face covering while on site.

Anyone showing any symptoms of coronavirus is urged to stay at home.

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