Liverpool Women's Early Access Service
In 2007 the publication of 'Maternity Matters' recommended that women should be able to access maternity services as early as possible and, if they choose to, be able to access maternity services directly without going via their GP.
From January 2012 we have introduced a new service that gives women the choice to either visit their GP or contact Liverpool’s Women’s directly to arrange an appointment with a midwife. If women do attend their GP they will be advised to telephone our early access line. This single point of contact facilitates equality and consistency in how women access maternity services.
How do I make my first appointment?
It is very simple all you need to do is call us on 0151 247 4747 to arrange your first appointment with us, or you can complete our online pregnancy booking form and a member of our booking team will contact you to arrange your first appointment.
Where will I have my appointments?
During that first telephone call a number of screening questions will be asked which will direct you to the most appropriate care for you. If you have any particular medical needs you will be able to access a hospital antenatal clinic where you will be seen by a midwife and an obstetrician so that an appropriate plan of care can be implemented early in pregnancy. This has been shown to improve outcomes and is an improvement on the previous system where there could be a delay in receiving specialist input.
If you have no underlying medical problems you will be given an appointment in a booking clinic located within a Children's Centre in your local community. Here you will be seen by the midwife that will provide the care throughout the remainder of your pregnancy and in the postnatal period.
You will continue to have your follow up visits at your GP surgery where the midwives work as part of the multidisciplinary team.
Will I be able to have a named midwife throughout my pregnancy?
Alongside the introduction of our early access service a considerable amount of work has been undertaken within the community settings to promote continuity and women having access to a named midwife. This will now be achieved with the majority of women’s first face to face contact with maternity services being with their "named midwife".
What are the benefits for me and my baby?
Direct contact with midwives can result in earlier access to health information and screening that can help the health and wellbeing of both mum and baby. This can also help to reduce potential complications by making sure mums-to-be get the healthcare they need to give their babies the best start in life.
Being able to access maternity services directly has been recommended as a way to ensure women access care as early as possible. Women who only access services later in pregnancy may have poorer outcomes for themselves and their baby.
Continuity of care and having a named midwife have also been shown to improve outcomes for women and in particular have been shown to improve women’s overall experience of maternity services.
We are confident that women and their babies will benefit from having access to maternity care sooner. They will be risk assessed and directed to the most appropriate professional to manage any underlying or newly developed complications and it will promote the development of a positive relationship with their own midwife.
Can I make a suggestion or give feedback?
Yes, your suggestions and feedback are always welcome.