Getting Ready for Baby programme fantastic success


Getting Ready for Baby programme fantastic successThe Western Trust is delighted with the fantastic success of the Getting Ready for Baby programme.  The programme which combines antenatal care and parenting education is a new pioneering way of delivering maternity care to first time parents.
The Public Health Agency (PHA) coordinates the EITP throughout Northern Ireland and aims to improve outcomes for children and young people through embedding early intervention approaches. This programme has been running across Northern Ireland for 18 months and already has 21 sites and is receiving very positive feedback from new parents. In the Western Trust over 500 first time mothers have attended the programme across four sites at South West Acute Hospital, Enniskillen; Omagh Hospital and Primary Care Complex; Waterside Health Centre and in partnership with Derry Well Women Centre, Londonderry, with an incredible 81% of all mothers suitable for the programme joining!
Speaking at the completion of the first ‘Getting Ready for Baby’ based programme in Fermanagh, Audrey Moore, Western Trust Early Intervention Transformation Programme (EITP) Implementation Manager said:  “The ‘Getting Ready for Baby’ programme was launched in Co Fermanagh in August 2017 and there has been a great interest from our new parents in the Fermanagh area.  I would like to thank them for attending this programme at the South West Acute Hospital and for providing positive feedback on this service. We are delighted that this programme is now available across the whole Trust area which will mean parents who would like to participate, can attend any of our four sites that suit their circumstances.”
Audrey continued: “Women will be offered this new programme when they go to the midwife for their booking appointment. The programme means women can have their ante-natal care combined with their parent-craft education with a group of new parents that are at the same stage of pregnancy. To enhance support to parents through improved social networks, the group based sessions will commence at around 16 weeks pregnant and continue in line with the regional antenatal pathway of usual contacts for first time parents until 36 weeks pregnant, at which time care will return to individual appointments by the same community midwifery team. Expectant mum’s scans and visits with the obstetrician remain the same as before.”
Audrey added: “Getting Ready for Baby’ programme includes all the same information as traditional ‘parent-craft’ classes but it also helps parents to start developing that early formative relationship with their baby. The programme includes advice on emotional health and wellbeing and is designed to help both parent and baby through pregnancy, labour and birth along with providing a strong foundation for secure attachment and positive mental health.”
Attending the first Fermanagh based programme where expectant parents Christopher and Poilin Finch from Enniskillen. Poilin said: ‘We really enjoyed interacting and making new friends with the other parents on the programme. The midwives looking after us where so friendly and approachable and made what we thought would be a daunting process so enjoyable. It has been a heartwarming experience and one that we were sad to be finishing!”
Siobhan Slavin, Change Manager for Early Intervention Transformation Programme (EITP) at the Public Health Agency, said: “Establishing a strong, supportive environment for parents is crucial in developing good health and wellbeing for any baby. ‘Getting Ready For Baby’ as part of the Early Intervention Transformation Programme (EITP), aims to equip parents with the emotional and practical skills ahead of their new-born’s arrival. So far in Northern Ireland over 1,000 mothers have completed the programme with 99% believing it helped prepare for interacting and nurturing with their baby, valued having a consistent team of midwives at their appointments and that the group based approach to their antenatal care and education was a good idea. We are delighted that this successful programme is now available to parents right across the entire Western Health and Social Trust.”
If you are interested in finding out more information please contact Audrey Moore, Western Trust EITP Implementation Manager on M: 07824597536 or email: