Patient experience is very important to us and helps us continue to improve our service. Please take the time to use the computer provided on Gloucester ward to complete the Maternity survey. All information supplied is completely anonymous.
Gloucester ward is a busy 27 bedded ward for mums and babies. There are three six-bedded bays, one four-bedded bay and five amenity/side rooms. The ward can be very noisy both day and night with babies crying. The lack of sleep can be exhausting, but this is a normal part of the first few days of your new life as a parent. We are here to guide you in those first bewildering hours and will encourage you to be independent when looking after yourself and caring for your baby.
During your stay on Gloucester ward, you and your baby will be cared for by a team made up from the staff listed below. Our aim is to send you home being able to care for your baby independently. You will continue your recovery at home and further support will be given to you by your community midwife, GP and health visitor.
The lead member of staff for Gloucester ward is:
Nicola Bruce – Ward manager
The team who will care for you and your baby
- At any one time, two to three midwives, a registered nurse and clinical support workers will see to you and your baby’s daily midwifery, nursing and care needs.
- Nursery nurses and specialist midwife infant feeding co-ordinators are there to provide feeding support and advice. The advice given to you about breast feeding is tailored to your baby’s individual needs at that moment in time and sometimes this may differ from previous advice. If you have any concerns or questions about the advice you receive, please let us know and we can explain why this may have happened.
- A housekeeper will assist you with your with meals and bed-making.
- Doctors are there to see you or your baby, if needed.
- Your baby will also be seen by hearing screening staff.
- A physiotherapist is available if you require.
- A pharmacist is available to dispense the medication you need to self-medicate or medicines that you may need to take home with you.
What to bring with you onto Gloucester Ward
- Sanitary towels and underwear
- Dressing gown and slippers
- Nursing bra and breast pads
- Clothes for you and your baby – enough for your stay
- Nappies, cotton wool and water wipes
Your arrival onto Gloucester ward
You and your baby will be greeted on the ward by a member of staff. The midwife caring for you will introduce themselves and make sure that you and your baby are well. The staff will make sure you have a call bell and jug of water to hand. The call bell is for you to use to call for assistance if you are unable to get out of bed. You will be encouraged to be mobile and care for your baby. Being mobile is the key to your recovery – no matter the birth experience.
Meals and drinks
There is a tea/coffee machine on the ward that you are welcome to use any time. The housekeeping staff will endeavour to offer you hot drinks during their tea rounds and make sure you have menus for that day’s meals. Breakfast, lunch and supper are provided on the ward and these meals will be brought to your bedside. Alternatively, food can be purchased from the vending machines or hospital shops nearby. But please be aware, we do not have the facility to warm up food brought onto the ward.
Feeding your baby
Breastfeeding provides the best possible food for your baby. It is important that you get the help you need during the first few hours and days to ensure successful breast feeding.
Our team of staff on Gloucester ward are trained specially to help you feed your baby. The advice given to you about breast feeding is tailored to your baby’s individual needs at that moment in time and sometimes this may differ from previous advice. If you have any concerns or questions about the advice you receive please let us know and we can explain why this may have happened. Our infant feeding coordinators are specialist midwives who are on hand to support you, give you further advice on breast feeding technique and they run breast feeding drop in sessions in the breast feeding room three times a week.
Gloucester ward also has a dedicated breast feeding room, which equipped fully with nursing chairs, sterilizers, breast pumps and a fridge for storing breast milk. We are part of the national Baby Friendly Initiative and do not provide formula milk. If you choose to give your baby formula milk, however, we are very happy to discuss sterilising and storage matters with you.
Pain relief and self-medication
If you take any regular medication, please bring it with you and let the ward staff know. If your birth experience means you have to take regular medication/pain relief, we can offer you the opportunity to manage your own medicines here on Gloucester ward – this will enable you to take your medicines or pain relief when you need to. Having a supply of pain relief at home, such as paracetamol and ibuprofen, is also helpful.
Visiting and the safety of the women and babies in our care
All visitors can get access to the ward by using the intercom system, which lets the staff team know who is trying to come on to the ward and why. Please ensure that your visitors only let people in that the staff are aware of – to prevent ‘tail gating’. We are here to protect the mothers and babies in our care, which is why we ask the name of those visitors presenting themselves to the ward.
You and your baby will be given identification labels – if any of these fall off or need replacing please let a member of know and we will replace them.
Click to see the visiting times for Gloucester and other wards at the Lister hospital.
Companions staying overnight
Here on Gloucester ward, we offer our mothers the opportunity to have an overnight companion. This can be your husband, partner or another nominated person who you would like to be there to support you overnight. Their role will be to support you, as well as taking part in the care of baby.
We are able to provide a chair for your overnight companion to sit in. However, we are unable to provide blankets, pillows or food. Your overnight companion is welcome to bring a pillow and blanket, plus refreshments, should they wish. As Gloucester is a single sex ward we are unable to provide washing/showering facilities, but there is a visitor toilet to use. Your overnight companion will be asked to read and sign a detailed agreement form – this has further information about staying overnight. If you have any questions regarding this arrangement, please speak to a midwife when you are admitted to Gloucester ward.
Your expected day of discharge depends on your birth experience, but as a general rule:
- If you had a normal birth with no complications you are expected go home within a few hours.
- If you had a normal or assisted birth, or you or your baby need to be watched more closely, you may go home after 12-24 hours.
- If you had a caesarean section we aim for you to be ready to go home after 24hrs. Early mobility is essential to recovering from a caesarean section and we will encourage you to get out of bed 6-12 hours after your baby has been born. You will be supported by all our staff to gain your independence in caring for yourself and your baby.
- If your baby is in NICU and pre-term you will be discharged as above. There will be extra support for you when you come to visit your baby.
- If your baby is in transitional care your preparation for going home will be as above, but you will remain with your baby on Gloucester Ward until your baby is ready to go home.
The going home process can happen during the day or evening taking place over several hours and will involve:
- A discussion about going home, the support you will be given and any signs and symptoms to look out for.
- Ensuring that any blood tests have been taken and the results checked by a doctor.
- Ensuring that any medication you or your baby needs are available from the pharmacy.
- Making sure any letters detailing your birth experience are signed by you and sent to your GP and your community midwifery team informing them that you are going home.
- Ensuring that when your baby is going home with you, they will have had a neonatal examination and hearing screening test completed or arranged. This can be done by either a specially trained midwife (in the hospital or at home) or a neonatal doctor if required.