Important information regarding the dining room located on Orchard Maternity and Orchard Gynaecology Ward

Date: 30/01/2023 | Category: Maternity

From Monday 16 January 2023, the dining room located on Orchard Maternity and Orchard Gynaecology Ward at Bedford Hospital will no longer be available. These changes are taking place to provide more clinical space across Cygnet Wing and bring the catering provision in line with the rest of the hospital.

Hot food will still be available at meal times and delivered to your bedside and hot and cold drinks will also still be available.

We appreciate your understanding whilst these changes are taking place.

Dining room


Why will the dining room no longer be in use for patients?

The dining room will be utilised for much needed clinical space, first as a triage area, whilst redevelopment work takes place on delivery suite and then the area will be continue to be utilised as a clinical space once redevelopment work is complete. This is to meet the recommendation of the 2020 CQC Report to have a dedicated triage area for acute admissions.

Who will be providing the meals?

The House Keeping team on Orchard Maternity and Orchard Gynaecology Ward will be providing the meal service. The team will visit patients in the bays and side rooms to take orders from a menu with special attention to dietary requirements.

If/when they are not available, there is a structure for the maternity team to support with the meal service.

We appreciate there is worry about staff having the extra task of providing meals but please be assured that there are staff within the team who can carry out the necessary clinical roles and accommodate the provision of meals, if needed.

Will hot drinks and toast still be available?

A hot drinks machine will be available in the hallway for around the clock use. Toast will be made on request by the House Keeping team or Maternity team.

Will this change meet the needs of patients?

We strongly believe this bed service will help meet the needs of all patients including women and birthing people who have had caesarean sections.

What about neonatal parents who used the dining room whilst their babies are in NICU?

For mothers who have a baby or babies in the neonatal unit (Meadowbank), a lunch voucher will be provided when a mother is remaining on the unit all day.  Food can be obtained from the Swannery or Bistro. Please note this applies when you are no longer an inpatient but your baby or babies remain on the Neonatal Unit.

Do you have any more feedback or questions?

We thank you for all the feedback provided so far and hope the above answers your questions. We will continue to listen to your feedback and welcome further suggestions directly to us or through Bedford Maternity Voices Partnership (MVP).