Hertfordshire Postnatal Illness Support has presented Thumbswood
Mother and Baby Unit at the QEII Hospital with their first ever
Mums in the unit suffering
with postnatal illness find it hard not being able to speak to
and see their older children on a daily basis.
idea of bringing a Skype facility to Thumbswood came from
Sally Tyers who is a trustee and group facilitator for the
charity. Now that Hertfordshire Partnership Trust has given
the go ahead, Hertfordshire Postnatal Illness Support will
roll out the scheme nationwide to ensure all mother and
baby units can have laptops and Skype facilities for their
Sally explained, 'Mums miss being able to read bed time
stories to their older children or say good night to them
and their family. The laptops will enable families to be
in closer contact when sometimes geographically it may be
difficult for them to regularly visit.'
Thumbswood is a six bedded specialist service, specifically
designed for mums to remain with their babies during their
recovery from postnatal illness.
It has a beautifully
equipped nursery and provides a homely atmosphere for the mums
and babies. It also offers supportive therapies, social events
and a dad's support group. The unit works proactively with the
charity Hertfordshire Postnatal Illness Support who run a monthly
group there for the mums to help provide them with support, information
and advice during their recovery. The group also helps mums with
their transition back home as they can access the monthly community
group and telephone support service if they choose.
Ward Manager, Elizabeth Evans said of the charity 'The women who
come to see us from Herts Postnatal Illness Support give our ill
mums hope for their recovery and for their future, as they know
they can use the charity's services for as long as they wish.'
The ethos of both the charity and Thumbswood is that Hertfordshire
women deserve Hertfordshire services.
The charity is aware that the future of this vital, local service
is in jeopardy. They hope sincerely that mums and their babies
will not be separated during their psychiatric treatment as research
shows the bonding process can be severely disrupted.
Charlotte Wilmer-Barbrook Chair of the charity said, 'Without
the specialist support of Thumbswood when I had postnatal illness,
I would not have survived to be here today or have been able to
create our charity which helps families across Hertfordshire.
Thumbswood must not be allowed to close.'