The NHS in north-west London is handing out a new baby booklet to women to give them useful information and contacts for when they leave hospital after giving birth.
It has been welcomed and supported by the National Childbirth Trust (NCT), and was developed following feedback from mums, midwives and maternity specialists that the information being provided to women had been inconsistent, out of date and often poorly explained.
Often when a woman leaves hospital, there has been a lot of information given verbally or on poorly photocopied sheets of paper. This new booklet called ‘After your baby’s birth’, however, is designed to allow new mums to take home the expert advice in a clear format, which they can read when it suits them. It is all based on the latest evidence and research in maternity care and is set to be used nationally.
The booklet includes:
- Local contact numbers and information on mental health, newborn feeding and follow-up care for mums
- Clear, simple explanations for common and concerning issues related to the mother’s physical health and wellbeing and that of her baby.
Pippa Nightingale, chief nurse at Chelsea and Westminster Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, said: “Mums told us that the information they were receiving was inconsistent and often confusing. It’s important to us that they know that once they’ve given birth the high level of support from the NHS will remain the same. We hope that they will find the booklet informative, clear and reassuring during a wonderful and life-changing experience.”
Elizabeth Duff, senior policy adviser for the NCT said the booklet is timely because a NCT report last year showed how the postnatal period can be difficult for many parents.
She said: “New mothers described being ‘on the receiving end of conflicting advice or information’ on things like feeding, caring for their baby, and caring for themselves.
“This new booklet gives clear and helpful advice and we’re pleased to see it’s available in several languages. We also welcome the section on emotional and mental health which includes information on how to get help.”
A copy of the booklet can be found in several languages on the Healthier NW London website.