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1.      I’ve just found out I am pregnant, what do I do now?

You can self-refer via the website ( and we will be in touch to arrange the first appointment.


2.      Who do I contact if I need advice?

a.    There is now one point of contact for users of all areas of maternity services in Harrogate. The number you need is 01423 557531. When you call this number there will be options to chose from and the system will direct your call as appropriate.

Whether you need MAC, Community Midwife, Pannal Ward, Delivery Suite, Antenatal Clinic or EPAU, they can all be accessed via this number.

b.      Routine enquiries or non-urgent queries can be answered by the Ask a Midwife service via Instagram and Facebook.


3.      What are the visiting hours on Pannal ward?

2pm-4pm and 6pm-8pm for up to 2 visitors. Booking is not required. Please do not visit if you have symptoms of a respiratory illness (cold/flu like symptoms) or if you have tested positive for Covid-19 in the last 10 days.


4.      What are the visiting hours on Delivery Suite?

Open visiting for grandparents and birth partners. 1-8pm for other visitors. No children under 12 except parents own children and 2 people to a bedside plus birthing partner.


5.      What are the visiting hours on MAC?

Seven days a week 8am-8pm


6.      What happens if the ward is full and I am in labour?

In infrequent and exceptional circumstances, in order to facilitate safe care for women/birthing people and their families, the decision may be made to place the unit on divert. This means that for often a short period of time, any further women/birthing people in labour would be asked to attend a neighbouring unit for their care. This decision is made when all other options have been exhausted including redeploying staff from other areas within maternity and when we have used the hospital midwife on call. We understand this can be stressful and anxiety provoking for women/birthing people and therefore it is a decision that is made between the midwife in charge, ward managers, matron, HOM (Head of Maternity), consultant obstetrician and the director on call. When the unit is on divert, the situation is assessed constantly and as soon as we have capacity the divert is removed. Any women/birthing people who are diverted to receive care in other units are in contact with the midwife in charge whilst they liaise with the most appropriate unit, taking into account many factors such as medical history/distance to travel etc. Any woman/birthing person who is diverted is contacted by the HOM after birth for support and debriefing postnatally.


7.      What equipment is available on labour ward for patients to use?

Birthing balls: 7 in total (3 regular sized, 4 large sized)

Peanut ball: 1

Floor mats: 3

Bean bags: 2

Shaped cushions (in the pool room)


8.      I’m pregnant and going on holiday. What do I need to do before I fly?

You need to contact your GP for a ‘fit to fly’ letter (usually only required at 28 weeks+ but always check with the airline first). During the flight, mobilise as much as possible and stay hydrated. For long haul flights, you will need compression stockings (these need to be measured first).


9.      How do I access antenatal education?

This can be done via the website


10.  I’ve just moved to the Harrogate area, how do I transfer my care from another Trust?

You will need to register with a local GP and then self-refer via the maternity website


11.  I am interested in a homebirth, how do I organise this?

Discuss with your Community Midwife. They will be able to give you all the necessary information.


12.  Work have asked me for a MATB1 certificate, how do I get one?

A MATB1 certificate is given to you at your week 21 appointment by your Community Midwife.


13.  I have been told they want to induce me but I don’t want this, what should I do?

If you are unhappy with the plan or unsure about a decision that has been suggested, speak to your named midwife to gain all the information and if you are still unhappy, you can speak to a senior midwife.


14.  Can I say no to an induction?

You can decline an induction. As long as you have been given all the information you need to make an informed decision.


15.  How soon can I go home after birth?

If everything is normal with you and baby, you can go home a few hours after delivery. The NIPE check (Newborn and Infant Physical Examination) is not done until your baby reaches 6 hours of age. so unless families are happy to go home without it then it may be that either a community midwife (only 1-2 are trained in doing them) can do it the following day or the mother/birthing person and baby would need to return to the ward for it completing within 72 hours of birth.