By Alex Glenn •
Published: 28 Nov 2021 • 13:35
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Unvaccinated pregnant women are pushing NHS maternity services to crisis point, according to doctors.
Doctors have warned that maternity services are at crisis point over the number of unvaccinated pregnant women who are infected with COVID on labour wards.
Expectant mothers who have Covid need additional care. Doctors are worried that this could be compromising the care of other pregnant women.
Dr Biswas is an adviser to the Healthcare Safety Investigation Branch. The doctor revealed: “Covid-positive expectant mothers in hospital need a lot more close monitoring,’
“If they are in labour, they will need detailed heart-monitoring every few hours. We’re supposed to have one midwife to every pregnant woman. But if you’re running those tests on the Covid patient every few hours, you can’t be with another woman in labour.
“If there are not enough midwives to go around, it’s feasible the patient who doesn’t have Covid will miss out on adequate care.”
Dr Mary Ross-Davie, midwife and Director for Professional Midwifery at the Royal College of Midwives commented: “Maternity services across the country are not set up to deal with the current situation,
“There has been a chronic staff shortage for years, and the pandemic has made this acute.
“Midwives are exposed to a younger population, many of whom aren’t vaccinated. A lot of our work involves going into people’s houses, where people are unjabbed, and being in very close quarters with them.
“So we have huge numbers of midwives catching Covid, and having to self-isolate.”
The doctor commented on the pressures faced by maternity services to treat women safely. Dr Ross-Davie added: “There is a huge pressure on services to find the physical space to treat every woman safely,
“If you have a large number of women who are Covid-positive, you will have to rethink the whole system to ensure there is space to isolate patients. For this reason, lots of midwife-led maternity units have had to close.”
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Originally from the UK, Alex is based in Almeria and is a web reporter for The Euro Weekly News covering international and Spanish national news.
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