Postnatal unit - Inverell
During your stay on the postnatal ward, you will be supported by midwives who will assist you to develop the skills to care for your baby. There are educational films available at the hospital as well as inpatient education sessions on the ward such a baby bathing demonstration. These are all great opportunities to gain confidence as new parents.
When you first arrive to the ward after the birth of your baby, the midwife caring for you will discuss a plan of care for your stay including discharge planning.
Within hours of birth, it is possible for you and your baby to go home if you are both well and your baby has fed. If you choose or need to stay in hospital, your care will be provided in the hospital’s maternity unit. For most women, pregnancy and birth is a healthy experience, which does not necessitate a long stay in hospital. The Maternity unit at Inverell Hospital has all single rooms with shared bathrooms. Other family members are unable to stay overnight with the mother and baby.
It is important not to separate mothers from their babies, so mothers keep their baby at the bedside with them, 24 hours a day. The midwives will assist and provide support with all aspects of baby’s care. Please ask for assistance if required. There is also a Mother and Baby Care Board near each bed which is a very useful way to request support. We also ask that this board is used to communicate with the staff if you are leaving the ward for any reason. We request that you write your mobile phone number and the approximate time of your return to the ward.
Feeding your baby
The midwives caring for you are able to give assistance, support and advice with breastfeeding. If additional help is required, the midwife caring for you will make arrangements for you to meet the lactation consultant midwife.
If you are artificially feeding your baby, you will need to bring a tin of your choice of infant formula with you, to use in hospital.
Support for breastfeeding your baby when you go home:
- The Australian Breastfeeding Association (ABA) provides breastfeeding support in the community. 24-hour phone number: 1800 6862686 (1800 MUM 2 MUM); while membership supports this valuable organisation, non-members can still receive support
- Child and Family Health Nurse provides long-term ongoing feeding and parenting support. You will be linked to this free service before discharge from our maternity service.
- Look for the pregnancy birth and baby (1800882436) poster in your maternity unit room for a useful contact number
Physiotherapy after your birth
A physiotherapist may see you for individual advice and exercise instruction following the birth of your baby, while in hospital or as an outpatient. For further information discuss with a midwife or your GP.
Routine screening for your baby
Routine screening as outlined in the NSW Health Having a Baby Book will be done in the early postnatal days.
Your GP Obstetrician will examine your baby’s hips to check for any hip problems.
You will be offered a screening test for hearing for your baby soon after birth. About one to two babies out of every 1000 will have a significant hearing loss. This screening program is called the NSW State-wide Infant Screening Hearing program (SWISH), and is available in the postnatal ward or at your local Early Childhood and Family Centre if you go home early.
Newborn Bloodspot Screening will be done around day 3-4 by your midwife.
Transport for going home
Please plan for your transport home. You will need an approved baby restraint fitted to your car. Ideally this should be in place around 34-36 weeks pregnant. The Transport NSW website can help you locate a fitting station near you.
Discuss with your midwife your needs for discharge. Ensure that you arrange on the previous evening for someone to collect you.