PARENTS and their new arrivals will soon notice an improvement in their surroundings at Warwick Hospital’s maternity unit as it begins a half a million pound project to enhance services.
Having secured almost £200,000 worth of funding from the Government, South Warwickshire NHS Foundation Trust, which runs the hospital, is now able to start work on improving the special care baby unit’s accommodation for parents and the maternity unit’s bereavement facilities and create a new reception and assessment area.
Head of midwifery Wendy Jones said: “The parents’ accommodation that we have at the moment in the special care baby unit is extremely limited.
“The new accommodation will be much more private. Parents will almost feel like they are walking into a self-contained flat, where they can start to form their family relationships.
“Sometimes mums feel as if they are being watched on the wards when they just want to have a cuddle with their baby, but the new accommodation will mean they can have their own space.”
The hospital’s services for the small number of parents who lose their babies will move to a quieter area which will be specifically designed for families experiencing bereavement.
Mrs Jones said: “When families find themselves in these circumstances, they really need somewhere that’s a bit of a sanctuary.
“Hearing other babies crying and seeing other parents enjoying time with their babies is not what you want if you have lost your baby. The new area will be very private.”
And a new assessment room for mums-to-be will mean there will be more space in the labour ward for those who are ready to be there. Mrs Jones said: “If women are not yet in labour, they can be assessed and then go home or to the antenatal ward. This will reduce traffic in the labour ward and improve the service for those who are in labour.”
Work on all three areas, which is costing around £500,000, is expected to be complete by the end of March - part of a long-term project to improve the hosptal’s maternity unit.
Glen Burley, trust chief executive, said: “We are aware that more women are choosing to give birth at Warwick Hospital. These developments are part of a plan to expand the department to ensure that we are able to offer a high quality environment for the future.”