This page gives information on your maternity care with us during the pandemic. It includes who you can bring to appointments and the birth.
Throughout your pregnancy, your maternity team will do all they can to provide you with information, guidance and support. You can also stay up-to-date with the BadgerNet Maternity Notes Portal, which is available to all women who have registered with King’s to have their baby. Please check the portal for all the latest information and guidance about maternity services during this time. If you have any queries about accessing the portal, please speak to your community midwifery team or the staff on duty.
If you are coming into the hospital, please also see the Attending our hospitals page.
Please be aware that the following arrangements could change in response to local or national COVID-19 prevalence or new Government guidance.
Testing for COVID-19 during pregnancy
Maternity services at King’s College Hospital and Princess Royal University Hospital (PRUH) are advising all pregnant people and their support person to undertake lateral flow testing twice weekly during the pregnancy, and within 24 hours prior to all planned appointments and attendances. This is to help reduce the spread of COVID-19 and enable any cases to be picked up early and managed appropriately.
You can order free lateral flow test kits daily from the GOV.UK website for yourself and your support person. They can be delivered or collected from a local pharmacy or community testing site. Each pack currently contains seven home test kits.
When you have undertaken a home test, it is important that you register all results online (positive, negative, or invalid – instructions are provided with test kits). We advise you to register an account when reporting your first result. This makes further reporting easier and quicker. You can also report your results by calling 119. After you report you will receive a text message and an email confirming your result entry. You and your support person will need to show your result entry when attending appointments.
If you get a positive result, you should follow the national guidance by self-isolating immediately, inform your midwife or hospital, and order a confirmatory polymerase chain reaction (PCR) laboratory test. The PCR test can also be ordered from the GOV.UK website. If you are COVID-19 positive or isolating but have an appointment or need to be seen at the hospital for any reason, please contact the labour line at PRUH on 01689 864189 or the telephone assessment line at King’s College Hospital on 020 3299 8389 and notify them of the positive result and you will be advised accordingly.
These changes started on Tuesday 4 May 2021.
Your antenatal care will include both in-person and virtual appointments. This helps make sure you get the care you need, such as scans and blood tests, while also avoiding unnecessary visits to hospital. For non face-to-face appointments, we will ask you if would prefer phone or video calls.
Our antenatal classes are taking place online, to ensure you don’t miss out on vital information and preparation. Ask your midwife for details of how to sign up.
Partners or companions attending antenatal scans
We understand the importance of having a partner or companion with you during your antenatal scans. Currently, one companion or partner is welcome to attend hospital-based antenatal clinics (Windsor walk, Community Midwives Centre, Midwives House, Orpington Hospital, Beckenham Beacon and Queen Mary’s – Sidcup) with you.
In order to maximise space and maintain social distancing regulations, the accompanying person will be asked to wait outside the building until the woman or birthing person is asked into the clinical room for their appointment. Children cannot attend any scans or appointments.
Currently we continue to offer the following options on where to give birth, based on your preferences and level of risk:
- at home
- in our midwife-led suite at King’s College Hospital
- at the birth centre at Princess Royal University Hospital (PRUH)
- on a labour ward
Our aim is to offer the same choice you would normally have, however, this will depend on how our service and staffing is affected by the changing local and national situation.
Birth partners during and after labour
One birth partner can be with you throughout your labour. They should bring everything they need with them, as they will not be able to re-enter the ward if they leave.
One support person is welcome to visit you on the postnatal ward 24 hours a day. You will not be able to swap this person and they should remain at bedsides as much as possible during their visit.
If you have your labour induced, the same birth partner can be with you to provide support.
On the Neonatal unit, the mother and baby are treated as one, which means the other parent of the baby can visit.
All visitors should wear a face mask, and comply with social distancing and hand sanitisation rules.
Your birth partner will be asked to sign an agreement when they are visiting the ward.
For more information
See our maternity service page
Follow @KingsMaternity on Twitter