A newly renovated antenatal clinic at Princess Royal Hospital will now provide a dedicated space for antenatal care and offer more services to pregnant women and people.
The antenatal clinic provides care during pregnancy, to ensure birthing parents and their baby/babies are as well as possible.
Before Covid, the antenatal clinic had its own designated area in the hospital but due to the pressures of the pandemic, the service was moved into a shared space with other departments, including physiotherapy and the diabetic foot clinic.
The refurbished clinic has created a dedicated space that allows service users to feel more comfortable in a pregnancy and baby centred space, surrounded by those either working or receiving care from this service.
As well as a lighter and brighter space, this busy clinic which can see up to 120 people a day, has additional consultation rooms, more areas for them to be seen privately and is wheelchair and pushchair accessible.
The newly refurbished clinic now also hosts its own waiting area away from other departments so users can wait in an exclusive area.
With extra space, the clinic can offer more services, including a vaccination hub and additional community midwifery clinics.
The clinic has been able to reintroduce in-person antenatal classes which had stopped due to Covid and were run virtually. These face-to-face classes will allow the team to provide a more personal service, where attendees feel more confident to ask questions and fully engage.
The service has also introduced an information system, available in a range of languages, to enable service users of different nationalities to access their antenatal care.
During the refurbishment, the team were able to keep services running with the help of extra rooms, ensuring people’s experience of antenatal care remained unaffected.
Debra Stokeley, Antenatal Clinic Lead said: “For almost four years, our service has run from an area that just wasn’t fit for purpose. We wanted our women and people to feel they were in a place that was centred around their care and needs which is why we’re so proud of our new clinic space.
“Whilst improving their experience, so that they can feel comfortable when they walk through our doors, we’re delighted to be able to expand the services we offer, helping them get the best from their antenatal care.”
Plans are now in place to refurbish the clinic’s garden with the support of funding from the Trust’s dedicated charity, My University Hospitals Sussex, to create a tranquil outdoor space for staff and service users to enjoy.