Local Mums and Midwives set to celebrate international day of the Midwife

Local Mums and Midwives set to celebrate international day of the Midwife

Three local mums cared for by the Midwifery Lotus team at Causeway Hospital during the pandemic share their experiences of our wonderful Midwives, as part of the International Day of the Midwife celebrations marked globally on 5 May 2021.

Entirely throughout the global crisis midwives, maternity support workers and student midwives have been met with extraordinary circumstances to handle, whilst still providing excellent care to women and their families.

This year’s theme is “Follow the Data: Invest in Midwives” which aims to highlight a new evidence report showing how investing in midwives saves lives, improves health and strengthens health systems. An increased investment in midwives could save up to 4.3 million lives every year by averting 67% of maternal deaths, 64% of neonatal deaths, and 65% of stillbirths. (Data gathered from https://www.internationalmidwives.org/assets/files/event-files/2021/04/11009-idm-toolkit-1.pdf)

The global pandemic brought many challenges such as restricted visiting to all healthcare settings, including maternity wards to protect new mums and their babies. Three first time mums who experienced birthing during the pandemic were supported by the Lotus team at Causeway and share their appreciation and gratitude to their Midwives.

First time mum Donna who usually lives in Australia made the journey home to Northern Ireland to be closer to family and additional support for the birth of her first child. However, quickly and unexpectedly Covid-19 rapidly became a global pandemic and Donna’s Husband who had returned to Australia for work purposes could not return back to Ballycastle for the birth of their first child. As result Donna went through her first pregnancy and birth without her husband, and postnatally until he could return at a later date after the birth of their son, Liam.

Donna shares her experience:

“Being a first time mum-to-be in the middle of a global pandemic, which also led to me being separated several thousand miles apart from my Husband, I was experiencing many anxieties about my upcoming birth and the project of doing it alone.

“I was made feel so welcome and supported in my choices for my ideal birth and once allocated Paula as my midwife, I was instantly so much more relaxed as I had someone I could build a relationship with, who would share my experiences and support me throughout the remainder of my pregnancy.

“I came aware from consultations feeling like I’d been for a catch with friends rather than medical appointments.

“It was everything I could have hoped for and more, and for that I will be forever grateful!”

Claire McMullan, first time mum shares her experience describing the team as providing a massive reassurance during these challenging times.

“My experience with the Lotus Team standard of midwifery care both antenatally & postnatally have been second to none & support that I would have been lost without.”

“…knowing my Lotus Midwife would be with during this time gave me a massive sense of reassurance.”

 

Ethna Kelly from Ballycastle is first time mum to baby girl Lyla explains her relationship with the Lotus team:

“I was very lucky to be part of the Lotus Team from the beginning of my pregnancy.

“Through Lotus I was able to form a relationship with my midwife Rachael who offered support from pregnancy right through to taking our new daughter Lyla home.

“This project to me makes the whole experience much more personal and alleviated my anxiety throughout pregnancy and beyond.”

Caroline Diamond, Head of Midwifery, Northern Trust explained how this year has been a challenging year for new mums and their Midwives alike:

“Being a Midwife is really much more than supporting mothers during the birth. Midwives provide an essential service right across the continuum to new mums during pregnancy, throughout labour and the early postnatal period, they see many times of happiness and sorrow as they support mothers and their families on their pregnancy and birthing journey.

“The pandemic and government restrictions in place have made it more difficult for new mums and has meant we have asked a lot more from our Midwives this year. They really have stepped up to provide a support like never before to new mums. Restricted with no visitors, our new mums have relied on Midwives to be a health professional, and a friend during the pandemic.

“It is really rewarding to hear that these local mums have felt such reassurance and support from our Lotus team, we have such a close relationship with our mums and we are so proud we have supported them through these really challenging times.”

Photographed:

(Behind L to R) Lotus Midwives, Rachael Lockhart & Paula Morrison, and (Front L to R) New mums, Claire McMullan with her baby girl Keilidh, Ethna Kelly with her baby girl Lyla and Donna Kelly Carnaghan with her baby boy Liam.

4th May 2021

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