Pregnant women ‘traumatised’ by maternity hospital visiting curbs
I know several pregnant women at the moment and they and everyone else they’ve talked to are upset to find that they are still not allowed to have their partners with them in the maternity units now that Covid-19 is more stable and staff are vaccinated and everything is slowly opening up again. Surely if they are the joint parents there is no reason to exclude one part of the team? It must be distressing to have to do it all on your own. I know they’re allowed at the birth now, but it’s a long old process to get there and very often there are some scary moments.
News from The Times covered the demonstrations in Dublin, Donegal and Louth to demand the easing of restrictions in maternity hospitals and units where partners are often not permitted to attend births or scans or visit neonatal intensive care units. This is also the case in England and needs to change immediately. Women should not have to be going to all their scans and checkups without their partners and if hairdressers, shops and the Brit Awards can happen, then this needs to change immediately because there is no logical explanation for restricting partners from visiting or attending births any more.
So many women have had to give birth or go through pregnancy complications on their own in the past year, and it is really hard for them.
Emer McGlade, a doula holding a “parents are not visitors” sign, said: “I work directly with couples who are expecting and the stories are endless. Pregnant women are going to come out of this pandemic with emotional trauma — the past 15 months have been unbelievable for them.”
She added: “We have had the petitions, we have had everything and received so much support, but we are still out here protesting because it feels like so little is actually being done.”