Access restored for support partners at Limerick maternity hospital 

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UL Hospitals Group Director of Midwifery Eileen Ronan

RESTRICTIONS on access to University Maternity Hospital Limerick (UMHL) have been relaxed for nominated support partners of patients in the hospital.

The measure restores the 8am to 9pm access that was curtailed last December due to a Covid outbreak that is still being dealt with by the hospital’s outbreak control team.

Following Infection Prevention and Control advice, hospital management restored access for nominated support partners to pre-outbreak status at all three inpatient wards.

Management continues to review and risk-assess all access measures in the context of the local Covid community transmission rate; the possibility of hospital staff becoming unwell; and the infrastructure of the hospital site.

UL Hospitals Group Director of Midwifery Eileen Ronan, said they were aware of the impact the access restrictions had on patients and their nominated support partners during the outbreak, and were glad to be able to restore access to where it was last December.

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“No hospital manager wants to impose restrictions on access, but they have been effective in this instance, and we are grateful for the cooperation of all patients, their families and the wider community at this time,” she said.

Temperature monitoring will remain in place at the hospital entrance, and anyone accessing UMHL is asked to wear a face mask in line with the national guidance.

An online system is available for nominated support partners to complete a questionnaire before attending the hospital and they are also encouraged to take an antigen test in advance of their visit.

Nominated support partners are allowed access the following areas, regardless of vaccination status, once the questionnaire and temperature screening has been completed –

· Labour Ward: throughout labour and delivery

· Elective and Emergency C-Section

· Early Pregnancy Assessment Unit

· Emergency high risk admissions

· 12-Week scan

· Anomaly scan

· Compassionate grounds

· Antenatal Ward: 8am to 9pm daily

· Postnatal Wards: 8am to 9pm daily

· Neonatal Intensive Care / High Dependency Unit: designated times