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Maternity COVID-19 information

COVID-19 Changes to Maternity Services

Bedfordshire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust has confirmed from the 29 November 2021, visiting restrictions in maternity services will be relaxed further. One partner will now be allowed to visit for four hours on our postnatal wards.

We know this additional relaxing of restrictions will be welcome news to women/birthing people and their support partners as they will now have more time together to have that much needed support. This change is applicable to both Bedford Hospital and the Luton and Dunstable University Hospital maternity units.

We kindly remind all visiting partners to our postnatal wards:

  • Only one partner allowed to visit which needs to be pre-booked with the ward
  • Take a Lateral Flow Test (LFT) before attending the hospital to visit, and show proof of a negative result before you enter the ward
  • Wear a surgical face mask at all times whilst in the hospital.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about this change can be found here.

When there are higher incidences of COVID cases locally we have to be extremely careful about lifting visiting restrictions. As such, it’s important to note that this further relaxing of restrictions could change at short notice if it becomes unsafe to continue. We still do need to limit the footfall on both hospital sites to not only protect patients but to also protect our staff, keep them well so they can continue to provide safe and essential quality patient care.

In light of the current coronavirus pandemic, a reminder of the current restrictions in our maternity services:

Antenatal appointments

One support partner is allowed to accompany pregnant women/people at ALL antenatal and scan appointments.

The Trust also continues to encourage all pregnant women/people and their support partners to take a Lateral Flow Test (LFT) ahead of attending their antenatal / scan appointments and to take the test no more than 72hrs before their appointment date.

These test results will not only help the Trust to manage any asymptomatic (people with no coronavirus symptoms) COVID positive patients in a controlled way but will also reduce the risk of the virus spreading in our hospitals.

Postnatal wards visitors

As mentioned above, from Monday 29 November 2021, one support partner will be allowed to visit for four hours per day on the postnatal wards.


Birthing women/people can have one support partner to help provide that much needed extra support during all times whilst on the Delivery Suite. Birthing partners must not attend if unwell, particularly if they have symptoms such as a temperature, headache, cough, breathing difficulties, or if they are self-isolating. If your birthing partner is unwell, you may nominate someone else to be with you in labour.

Induction of labour

If you require an induction of labour, and you need to be admitted to the ward to start the induction process, your birthing partner will not be able to be with you while you are on the ward. This is to help us keep everyone who uses our services as safe as possible. Once you start contracting, and are awaiting transfer to delivery suite or you’re transferred to the delivery suite to continue with your induction of labour your birthing partner will be able to join you. The midwives looking after you will support you to ensure timely attendance of your birthing partner.

Elective Caesarean Section

All elective C-Sections for clinical needs are proceeding as normal on both hospital sites. Elective C-Sections by maternal requests (where there is no clinical need) are being assessed on an individual case by case basis across both hospital sites.

Whooping Vaccination – at the Luton and Dunstable University Hospital

We are providing a catch-up opportunity for women who may have missed their whooping cough vaccination.
You can drop-in to the L&D Monday to Thursday 9am to 3pm, or if you would prefer to attend at a quieter time, you can call during this time to arrange an appointment. For those earlier in pregnancy, we will try to accommodate you after your 20-week scan.
Call 01582 491166 and ask for extension 2312.