We provide a community midwifery service that provides antenatal, intrapartum, and postnatal care for all women that deliver in Bedford and some women who deliver out of area, as well as a home birth service.
We have 6 teams of community midwives that are comprised of 5-6 midwives in each. Covering approximately 42 GP surgeries across Bedford Borough and Bedford Central, also including local Children’s Centres for women to ‘drop in’. We have a current home birth rate of 2-3% annually. Our community midwifery teams are committed to providing high quality care in the low risk environment, and would welcome the opportunity to support you in your birthing choices.
Vaginal Birth after Caesarean Section
Our midwives understand that providing choice for new parents is extremely important. Women who have had a previous caesarean section will be given the opportunity to consider a natural birth if there are no contraindications. 75% of women who attempt a vaginal birth after caesarean section will be give birth successfully without any complications.
Our consultants and midwives run group sessions for women who have previously given birth via a caesarean section the opportunity to come and talk about their experiences and discuss their next mode of delivery.
We understand that many new parents have a lot of questions about what happened during pregnancy and labour as well as what will happen after birth. Our midwives provide a listening service that offers new parents the chance to talk about and reflect upon their birth experience.
The service is open to both mum and dad and helps new parents make sense of what happened and ask any questions they have, it may also help you to prepare and plan for future pregnancies by talking through your previous birth experiences.
Up to one hour is allocated for each couple to talk about their birth experience, fill gaps and ask questions. Meetings are usually via video and appointments in these regular clinics can be booked via email or phone
If you feel you could benefit from this service, please email us on ListeningService@bedfordhospital.nhs.uk and include your name, phone number, date of birth and date of birth of your baby. Once received, one of our midwives will contact you to arrange an appointment.
Infant Feeding Support
Our midwives will take the time to talk you through your feeding options, explaining about the value of breastfeeding and how to get it off to the best start. We understand that feeding is not just about nutrition but also about nurture and how important it is to develop the relationship between parent and baby in those first few days. We encourage skin to skin contact, not only for initiating feeding but as the perfect way to say ‘hello’ to your new baby. We will support you to recognise that your baby is feeding effectively and provide advice to help you with your feeding journey.
We have a designated infant feeding team who are available to support you should you run into problems in the early days and we work closely with the Community and Health Visiting Teams to ensure you are able to access the support when you need it.
Tongue Tie Clinic
We recognise some babies with tongue ties can breastfeed perfectly whilst others may have more difficulties. Staff are trained to actively support breastfeeding mothers and if it is felt the presence of the tie is impacting on feeding, a referral can be undertaken for a review and if appropriate a release, at the Midwife Led Tongue Tie clinic. We also work collaboratively with our Oral Maxilla Facial department who also undertake tongue tie releases.
Butterfly suite and family in need midwifes
We know that not every birth goes to plan, in the event of any complications we have a specialised team of family in need midwives who are on hand to look after and support you through this difficult time in a purpose-built, private environment.
The butterfly suite is a private space for families who need some extra privacy and time alone after a difficult birth. The room is a warm, comforting environment with soft furnishings, tea and coffee making facilities, colourful artwork and an en-suite shower and toilet, designed to make it feel like a home, rather than a clinical space. The private room allows families to be together in a peaceful and relaxing environment for as long as they wish, and we hope that this helps families who have experienced a traumatic birth.