Now that you are pregnant
Your care begins with your General Practitioner (GP), by confirming your pregnancy, taking a comprehensive health and medical history, ordering your blood tests and an obstetric ultrasound.
Your GP will write and send a referral to the Glen Innes Hospital maternity unit to initiate your care, and is usually done at around 12 -14 weeks.
Once we have received your completed referral, including all blood test results and scan reports, our maternity unit will then process your details and notify you by phone to make an appointment time to have a booking in visit. This visit will be attended by a midwife at either Glen Innes maternity unit and usually occurs before the 20th week of your pregnancy. During this visit, the midwife will discuss with you the options of care available for your pregnancy.
Where you have your pregnancy care will depend on your general health, your preferences, where you live and your previous birth experience.
The midwife will also discuss the importance of healthy eating and physical activity during this visit. You will be offered a referral to the Get Healthy in Pregnancy service. The Service is open to anyone aged 16 years and over. You will be able to talk with a qualified dietitian or exercise physiologist over the phone in the privacy of your own home. For Aboriginal women or women carrying an Aboriginal baby you may be able to speak with the Get Healthy Aboriginal Liaison Officer (ALO), for your first phone call or one of your coaching calls. The ALO will talk to you about your needs and your access to services in the community before referring you to either a dietitian or an exercise physiologist for the remainder of your phone calls.
Click on the image below for more information or to refer yourself to the service.
Options of care during pregnancy
This model of care is provided by General Practitioners with an Advanced Diploma in Obstetrics in consultation with Consultant Obstetricians as needed, from the referral sites of Armidale, Tamworth or JHH, according to your individual health and pregnancy needs. You will also need to come to the maternity unit for a Booking-in visit. Your baby will be born at Glen Innes Hospital unless certain pregnancy complications arise. Your GP Obstetrician will be available and generally present for your birth. The care during labour will be provided by the midwives at the Hospital.
Specialist Obstetric Care at Armidale Hospital Antenatal Clinic
Specialist Obstetricians are best able to care for women who have pregnancies complicated by:
- A previous pregnancy requiring specialist care and/or hospitalisation
- A pregnancy that is not progressing normally
- A multiple pregnancy, e.g. twins
- Diabetes and/or other conditions
This care is accessible at Armidale Hospital and may involve shared care with your local GP.
AMHIS (Aboriginal Maternal Infant Health Service)
The AMIHS provides care for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women, and/or women whose baby will be Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander. The service aims to provide culturally appropriate support and education during pregnancy, after birth and for children up to early school years. This service includes antenatal care, child and family health care, immunisation, child health checks, support service referrals and health education. It is a shared service with Inverell hospital. You may contact the staff directly, or talk to your GP to make a referral to the AMHIS service.
Please phone AMIHS on 0439493039 OR 0267219594
- You think you are pregnant or have a positive pregnancy test
- You have children between 0-5 years
Pregnancy support services
Early Pregnancy Assessment Service
This service is available for women with early pregnancy abdominal pain, bleeding or severe vomiting (up to 18 weeks) through the Emergency Department, your GP or GP Obstetrician.
Multicultural Health Services
The Multicultural Health Unit provides the following services to women from culturally and linguistically diverse (CALD) backgrounds:
- Health Care Interpreter Services
The Multicultural Health Unit provides professional health care interpreters for all women from CALD backgrounds. Health Care Interpreters assist women to communicate with their health professional during antenatal visits, classes, labour, postnatal period and other health-related occasions. If you need the assistance of a health care interpreter please let staff know and they will book one for your appointment.
- Aboriginal Liaison Officers
The Glen Innes Hospital Aboriginal Liaison Officer is available to assist Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander patients.
If you or your family require assistance in accessing hospital services, please ask one of our staff members to contact the Aboriginal Liaison Officer for you.
Care and Support for women with drug and alcohol problems
Some women may still be using alcohol or taking drugs during pregnancy. It is known that this can be very harmful to the unborn child. A number of skilled, non-judgmental and empathetic staff can provide a range of support. This will greatly improve the chances of having a healthy baby. Other services include the Drug and Alcohol Team and Social Work team.
Providing practical assistance and counselling: Social Work
Social workers are part of the health care team looking after you and your family while you are in hospital.
Social Workers can offer counselling to individuals and families in all areas, including:
- Women or families experiencing difficulties during the pregnancy, such as family breakdown or financial difficulties
- Women or families considering adoption
- Information about community support services
If you wish to contact a social worker, ask your midwife, doctor or other hospital staff involved in your care to contact a social worker for you.
Promoting Healthy Eating: Dietitians
Both you and your baby need extra nutrients during all stages of pregnancy and breastfeeding. Eating a nutritious diet during pregnancy promotes healthy growth and development for your baby, prepares you for breastfeeding and is important for your own wellbeing. It is important to remember that even though you are eating for two, there is no need to eat twice as much.
A dietitian can assess your diet and suggest any changes that you may need to make. This is particularly important for women who are under- or over-weight, suffer from anaemia or a malabsorption illness such as Crohn’s or Coeliac disease, follow a vegetarian diet, or are diabetic.
Our staff can refer to this service as required or requested.
Get Healthy in Pregnancy
The Get Healthy in Pregnancy Service is a FREE telephone health coaching service available to anyone aged 16 years and over. You will be able to talk with a qualified dietitian or exercise physiologist over the phone in the privacy of your own home.
Your health coach could help you to:
- Eat healthily
- Get active
- Gain or maintain a healthy amount of weight during your pregnancy
- Not drink alcohol during your pregnancy
- Return to your pre-pregnancy weight.
For Aboriginal women or women carrying an Aboriginal baby you may be able to speak with the Get Healthy Aboriginal Liaison Officer, for your first phone call or one of your coaching calls. The ALO will talk to you about your needs and your access to services in the community before referring you to either a dietitian or an exercise physiologist for the remainder of your phone calls.
Discuss referral to the service with your midwife at your booking-in visit or you can click the image below for more information and to refer yourself to the service.
This service can be accessed online or discuss referral with the midwife at your booking in visit.
Helping women to move well: Physiotherapy
A physiotherapist is available to give you advice or treatment on the discomforts that may arise during your pregnancy or after your baby is born. These may include back pain, pelvic pain, pelvic floor weakness, incontinence or abdominal muscle weakness.
If you wish to see a physiotherapist, ask your caregiver to contact them for you.
Glen Innes Birth Suite
The Glen Innes maternity unit is located in a separate building to the main hospital on the right hand side of the main carpark.
When you arrive at Glen Innes Hospital, follow the signs to the Maternity Unit on level , proceed straight to the Maternity Unit.
You will be met by a midwife who will take you to an available room.
A plan for going home after birth
For most women, pregnancy and birth is a healthy experience. Women may choose to go home from the hospital soon after the baby is born. This is dependent on both mother and baby being well, baby has had the first feed, and mother is confident going home with adequate family support. You can go home straight from Birth Suite. A physical examination of mother and baby will be done before you leave. All the necessary documents and supportive information will also be provided.
Travelling to have your baby in hospital
- Contact the midwife in the Birthing Service for advice.
- Wear a sanitary pad
- Have your support person drive safely, and use your seat belt with lap belt positioned below your baby. Have old towels available to catch leaks if they occur, and an old ice-cream bucket in case of nausea or vomiting.
- In NSW, an ambulance ride can be very expensive; it is strongly suggested that you join an ambulance fund for your family emergency situations, if you are not already covered by private health insurance (this may be done through any major private health fund office or online).
- Bring your antenatal record. Your antenatal record provides us with your history and plan of management for labour and birth. Please carry it at all times, and present it to the midwife on your arrival.
Husband/ partner/ support persons in labour and birth
We welcome people who will support and encourage you throughout labour and birth. There is room for a maximum of two support people at any one time in the Birth Suite.
It is the woman’s choice who supports her during pregnancy, labour, birth and the postnatal period. A doula is a layperson, identified by the woman, who provides continuous support during the antenatal period, childbirth and the postnatal period. The doula attends as an employee of the woman. Under normal circumstances each woman is able to have two support people with her in delivery suite. A doula is to be considered one of the two support people.
Hunter New England Local Health District (HNELHD) is open to the use of doulas at birth, and maternity services will facilitate a productive, receptive environment for doulas to support women. However, HNELHD clearly states that it does not accept responsibility and is not accountable for any actions or advice given to labouring women by doulas.
You may wish to have some visitors visit you soon after the birth of your baby in the Birth Suite, they may present to the maternity unit and notify staff that they have arrives. This is to protect your privacy and the privacy of other women in the unit. Please be aware that there is no waiting room for visitors in the Birth Suite.
Enquiries while in Birth Suite
To protect your privacy and confidentiality, information is not given to people enquiring about you without your consent. We will take messages for you to contact the enquirers at a convenient time.
Video recording and photography
We respect your wish to film labour and birth. However, all staff have the right to refuse to be identified on film or refuse filming during specific procedures. Please inform your midwife of your intention to film.
There are no childcare facilities available in the maternity unit. If you wish to have your children present for labour and birth, we request you have one adult, other than your main support person to care and supervise. However, the limit of two additional people at a time will also need to be considered.
We ask that all mobile phones are turned to silent mode in the Birth Suite, and ward environments.
Keeping baby with you following birth
Your baby will remain with you following birth. Skin-to-skin is encouraged for a minimum of 1 hour after the birth or until the first breastfeed. Skin to skin contact stimulates the mothers’ production of the oxytocin hormone, which decreases bleeding, promotes bonding and breastfeeding. It allows the baby to smell, touch and know mum as well as stay warm. When the baby shows signs of readiness, he/she will be able to breastfeed.
It is strongly suggested that during this important time the baby stays with mum, rather than being handed around to other family members. The father of the baby has an important role in protecting the new mother and baby.
After your baby has fed, he / she will be weighed and measured. With your consent, Vitamin K (Konakion) and Hepatitis B vaccine injections will be given at this time.
Two arm-bands with the baby’s correct identification details will be placed on the baby’s arm and leg – the midwife will ask you to check these details to ensure they are accurate. The identifying number on the mother’s armbands are the same as the baby’s, so it is important that you make sure the identifying numbers correspond.
The armbands are routinely checked by the midwives. Should the armbands fall off, please tell the midwife as soon as you can so that new armbands can be provided.
What happens to the placenta (afterbirth)?
After the birth of your baby, the placenta will be disposed of in accordance with NSW Health Guidelines.
On some occasions the placenta may be sent to the Pathology Department, for extra information. If you would like to take your placenta home please talk to your midwife.
Stem cell collection and storage
If you are interested in the collection of stem cells from your baby’s cord blood for possible future use, you need to organise this with one of the private companies several weeks before coming to hospital to birth your baby. You will need to organise the collection, equipment, courier service and storage with the private company.