Published on: 24 June 2020

To ensure the safety and wellbeing of our staff, mums and babies, we have had to make some temporary changes to how we deliver your maternity care.

Click here to view our latest maternity visiting update.

Keeping our mums and babies safe

To help keep our mums and babies safe we ask:

  • That you and your birthing partner / support person takes a home COVID-19 if you have any symptoms of COVID-19 or if you have been in close contact with anyone with symptoms or who has tested positive. If you test positive for COVID-19 please let us know so we can keep you, our other patients and staff safe. 

Mums-to-be will be offered a hospital COVID-19 test upon:

  • Admission when in labour
  • 48 hours prior to admission, if you're attending hospital for a planned caesarean or induction 

COVID-19 testing

We are now testing all pregnant women on admission to Maternity Services.

This includes women who show symptoms of COVID-19, such as a cough or temperature, as well as those who do not show symptoms.

Appointments and scans

We continue to support mums-to-be to bring one partner/support person with them to scans, antenatal clinics and antenatal day unit appointments. 

It is very important that you attend your scheduled appointments, if you are unable to attend please contact our maternity team and let them know. 

Ante/Postnatal Community Visits

The majority of your antenatal care will still take place face-to-face in your GP surgery or in your own home.

Where possible some of your antental care will be via telephone appointment

Birthing partners and your delivery

Two birthing partners are welcome to support mums-to-be during assessment, induction of labour, labour and delivery. Please ensure that birthing partners come prepared with snacks and refreshments while they are in the delivery suite. 

If you have suspected or confirmed coronavirus, we advise that you have your baby at Sunderland Royal Hospital. Our talented team of midwives will help support you to follow your birth plan as closely as possible.



  • We continue to support mums-to-be to bring one partner / support person with them to scans, antenatal clinics and antenatal day unit appointments. 
  • We are now welcoming two birthing partners to accompany mums-to-be during labour and delivery. Your birthing partners are advised to bring snacks and refreshments with them.
  • We continue to support mums and mums-to-be to have one partner / support person with them for the duration of their stay on the ward. Please let our team know who this will be. 
  • We are welcoming two visitors on our postnatal ward (this can include a sibling). Visiting will be for an hour and will need to be arranged in advance with the ward. 

Postnatal care

You will receive care and support from your midwife via the telephone, in your home and possibly in a postnatal clinic depending on your individual circumstances.

All babies born will be contacted by a Health Visitor within 14 days of their birth.

South Tyneside 

Our Health Visiting Service in South Tyneside are contactable Mon-Fri 08.30am –  17.00pm via SPOC.

All babies born will be contacted by a Health Visitor within 14 days of their birth. The clinics and breast feeding support groups are temporality suspended, however contact can be made to the team on 0191 283 1508 (SPOC)

Any family with a pre-school child can contact the Health Visiting Service during the times above.


Health visiting Service in Sunderland are contactable Mon-Fri

Growing Healthy Sunderland

Tel: 03000 031552

Our classes

Our classes are up and running again, however currently classes are for pregnant women only. Numbers are limited so please ring to book to avoid disappointment

For more information please click here

Antenatal Classes

Tuesday and Thursday- Antenatal class 6-8pm (currently women only) Discussing labour, pain relief, active birth and water birth

Thursday and Saturday mornings - Infant feeding class

All classes are held at the Midwifery-Led Birthing Centre at South Tyneside District Hospital and open to all women within South Tyneside and Sunderland. Numbers are limited.

For more information or to book onto one of our classes please call 0191 404 1031.


Virtual Classes

We have also created new virtual antenatal class videos. Click the links below to view: 

NB: If you need to watch these videos in another language please follow these instructions: 

  1. Click the link to take you to the video 
  2. Click on the settings icon 
  3. Select Subtitles/CC then select Auto Translate 
  4. A list of languages should then appear for you to choose from

Translated posters

You can view translated versions of NHS maternity and coronavirus posters by clicking the links below. 

Languages include

  • Arabic 
  • Cantonese
  • French
  • Mandarin
  • Polish
  • Portuguese
  • Punjabii
  • Urdu
  • Gujarati

Looking after yourself and your baby in pregnancy 

Planning your birth

Parent information for newborns

Illness in newborns

Support for black, asian and minority ethnic women

As a pregnant woman from a Black, Asian or minority ethnic (BAME) background, you may feel worried about coronavirus.  Your local maternity team is still here to help you, so contact them as you would normally. They will be working together with you and providing you with extra support during this unprecedented time.

Some studies suggest that BAME pregnant woman are more likely to be admitted to hospital with coronavirus than white women, so maternity services have been asked to take extra precautions to keep you safe, which includes prioritising your care and access to services.

It is also important that you take extra steps to protect yourself and follow the advice about how to avoid getting coronavirus. If you think you have coronavirus then alert your maternity team and they will advise you about what to do next.

Remember to attend all your antenatal appointments and seek help early from your midwife or maternity team if you have any concerns about your health or your baby’s health. Get help early so you have the best chance of recovery.

Keep up-to-date with all the latest coronavirus pregnancy and birth advice at, which has links to helpful resources; including a range of topical videos and leaflets and an animation. Alternatively contact NHS111 or in an emergency dial 999.