Toggle site contrast Toggle Contract

Information for partner/ companion staying overnight on Rothschild postnatal ward

It is important that you read and understand this information if you choose to stay overnight with your partner.
If you or any visitors have an illness such as a cold, flu or vomiting and diarrhoea, then please do NOT visit.
Please speak to the midwife in charge on arrival.

Dear Partner/Companion

Having considered the views of women and reviewed extended visiting times offered in other maternity hospitals in the UK, we welcome partners/companions staying overnight on Rothschild Ward.

The decision to stay overnight or not is entirely up to you and, should you take this opportunity, it is with the understanding that you are able to provide practical help and support for mothers and babies. We recognise that this helps with family bonding and reduces anxiety and stress among mothers.

Due to our restricted environment and limited space, we are unable to offer comfort facilities such as a bed or showers. You can use the chair by the bed to rest and provide your own blanket if you wish. We have a responsibility for the health and safety of everyone present and therefore must comply with local policies such as infection control, fire safety and the safeguarding of mothers and babies. In view of this partners/ companions must agree to the conditions set out below in order to stay overnight on the ward.

Infection Control/Prevention

  • Please do not sleep in the beds with your partners. Mothers and babies are more at risk of developing infections which can increase the length of their hospital stay.
  • Please use the hand gel when entering and leaving the ward area and please wash your hands before and after you help care for mother and baby.

Dignity/Noise

  • Partners/companions are advised to remain fully dressed with the curtains drawn, whilst on the ward. We wish to preserve the dignity and privacy required by everyone present including staff members and particularly other mothers on the ward.
  • Please keep noise levels down, and do not use mobile phones or hand held devices that are noisy at night time (20:00-08:00hrs). This will help facilitate sleep and rest for mothers and babies.

Safety

  • You will need to sign a register to stay overnight so that we know you are present and can account for you in case of fire and the need to evacuate.
  • If the fire alarm sounds please follow instructions given by the ward staff. Do not attempt to leave the ward.
  • Do not take your baby out of the ward at any time. We need to ensure that babies stay with their mother at all times.
  • Kindly do not wander around the ward at night. You should not leave the ward between 22:00hrs – 07:00hrs. Not all women will have their partner or companion to stay and may find strangers wandering around uncomfortable.
  • If you are a smoker, please be reminded that the Trust adheres to the no smoking policy. You will not be permitted to leave the ward to smoke between 22:00hrs- 07:00hrs, or anywhere within the hospital.
  • It is important you do not sleep in the bed with your partner as the beds are not designed for, nor are they safe for two people and any damage will have to be paid for.
  • If there is an emergency involving your partner or baby that requires immediate medical attention, please stay calm and let the staff attend to mother and baby. In this instance it would be helpful to stay in the background until the emergency situation is over. A member of staff will provide information and support following the emergency.
  • If there are concerns for the physical safety of mothers and babies or staff on the ward, the security team will be called to assist at any time.
  • We reserve the right to decline permission for partners or companions to stay on the ward at any time or if there are significant concerns that will compromise the safety of mothers, babies and staff.
  • Buckinghamshire Healthcare NHS Trust operates a zero tolerance policy on violent, disruptive or aggressive behaviour. It is a criminal offence to cause a nuisance or disturbance on NHS premises.

General

  • The staff on the ward often have up to eight women to care for and prioritise the care they give. On occasion you may have to wait for a few minutes until the call bell is answered, however we endeavour to do so as quickly as possible.
  • On night duty there are five Midwives on shift, one Maternity Care Assistant and a Nursery Nurse. We do not have housekeeping staff available during the night, so on occasion the Midwives and Maternity Support Workers will be undertaking this type of role as well as their clinical duties.
  • If you have any concerns or worries regarding your partner’s or baby’s welfare, please ask to speak to the Midwife in charge of the ward. We would welcome any feedback about your experience as a partner/companion staying overnight.

Parking

  • Parking permits are not available from the ward and you will need to park your vehicle in the public parking areas and follow the instructions displayed on the parking meters.