An outstanding experience for every patient

Postnatal Care 

Postnatal Ward

During your stay on the postnatal ward at Salisbury District Hospital our team of midwives will assess your needs on a daily basis. This assessment will include both yourself and your newborn baby. From this assessment the midwives will be able to provide care on an individual basis that will meet all your physical and psychological needs in order to prepare you for discharge home.

The midwives are supported by a team who help them care for you and your baby. These include specially trained maternity care assistants, pediatricians and obstetricians. We have a strong focus on team working within the unit to promote good communication and safe and effective care.

Your baby will receive a full top to toe newborn examination from either a specially trained midwife or a pediatrician. This examination will include a check on your baby’s heart sounds, hips and provide an opportunity to discuss common problems and ailments that you may encounter in the postnatal period for example jaundice, nappy rash and colic. If it is not possible to complete this examination in the hospital it will be completed by a midwife in the community.

All midwives and maternity assistants will provide you and your partner with parent education on baby care such as nappy changing demonstrations, bath demonstrations and advice on baby safety and cot death prevention.

The postnatal ward comprises of one 7 bedded bay, one 4 bedded bay and four amenity side rooms. All beds have nurse call bell availability and pre-pay TV and bedside phones so your family and friends can keep up to date with you during your stay. We also offer a quiet room if you would like time to yourself. Equipment is available for expressing breast milk and milk storage if this is required.

The midwives caring for you will be able to advise you on the most suitable time for your discharge home. For some mums this may be an early discharge home on the same day as delivery if all is well and adequate support is available at home. It is recognised that pregnancy and delivery is a normal process and while the hospital environment is the chosen place for some women to deliver, postnatal care and recuperation is best in the home environment and it is advised support from your partner, family and friends is available on your return home. A 24 hour emergency phone number (01722 336262), depending on your area and a non urgent number (01722 425185) is given to you on discharge from hospital. You will also received follow-up care from the community team midwives which will consist of a home visit and an invitation to see them at the local children’s centre.

Visiting times

For the security of women and their babies we would appreciate it if you could comply with the following visiting times:

  • 10.00am – 9.00pm - Partners only
  • 3.00pm – 7.00pm - Maximum three visitors only

No children may visit other than the mother’s own.



All entrances to the ward are locked at all times and visitors can access the ward via the telephone intercom system.

On arrival to the postnatal ward your baby will have a security tag applied to their ankle and on discharge home this will be removed.

Amenity Beds

If you choose to have an amenity bed (A bed in a separate room), there are 4 available which are provided on a first come first served basis, but if a women has a clinical need for a single room then they will take priority. The rooms are charged on a per night basis and the cost is £80 per night payable by on admission. Your room will be en suite and your partner will be able to stay but visiting times are the same for all other visitors. We unfortunately are unable to provide food for your partner but a fridge and microwave is available on the ward if required. We also ask that partners do not walk around the ward outside of visiting hours. Amenity rooms can be booked in advance or on the day subject to availability.

Postnatal Community Care

When mothers go home from the maternity unit, their care is transferred to a community midwife. The Community Midwifery Teams provide a range of care to ensure the well-being of the mother and baby e.g. dressings, examinations and screening tests. Support will be tailored to the mother’s previous experience e.g. first time mothers may receive help with extra breast-feeding support, demonstration baths and Parentcraft support.

If the mother is discharged in the night from the labour ward, the community midwife may visit on the day of discharge (N.B. This will be at the mother’s choice).

Generally the community midwife will visit the day after discharge and then visits will be according to need, not necessarily every day, until Day 10 – or longer if needed.
At this point care is transferred from the Maternity Unit to the Health Visitor.

Each community team have Maternity Care Assistants that help provide postnatal care under the supervision of midwives.

Sometimes telephone calls are made instead of visits to provide help and advice. All mothers will be provided with a telephone number for contacting a midwife should advice be required.
The City Team run Postnatal Clinics, for which appointments are allocated.

Infant Feeding

Salisbury Maternity and Neonatal Services are an accredited Baby Friendly Unit (an award given by Unicef UK to facilities that give a high level of support to mothers with feeding their babies). There is a large body of evidence which indicates that breastfeeding is the healthiest way to feed babies for at least the 1st 6 months of life, and at least 80% of mothers who have babies in Salisbury choose to breastfeed their babies at birth. All staff are trained to support mothers in their chosen way of feeding their babies, whether breast or bottle and to help them establish a close relationship right from the start.

Breastfeeding Peer Support

There is a wide network of breastfeeding support groups in Salisbury and the surrounding area. These groups are an ideal meeting place for mums-to-be who are thinking about how their baby will feed and for new mothers to meet with other breastfeeding mothers. Most are staffed by volunteer mothers, trained as peer supporters, who can offer support to breastfeeding mothers in the first weeks after the baby’s birth. Many are held in your local Children’s Centre which can provide many resources for new parents. Your Midwife will give you a leaflet listing the time and venue of your nearest group. Alternatively, go to the Real Baby Milk website and search under “Find support nearby” then enter your postcode or the county in which you live.


Salisbury Maternity and Neonatal Services have a number of Midwives trained to assess and divide tongue-ties in newborn babies, which can sometimes affect the way the baby feeds. A tongue-tie exists when the lingual frenulum (the thin string of tissue which most people have under the tongue) is too tight or attached too far forward, and restricts the efficient movement of the tongue.

We run a weekly clinic to assess and carry out tongue-ties up to 12 weeks after birth. To book, contact Maternity Reception: 01722 336262 x2177

A supervisor is always available to provide support, advice and guidance to mothers, families and midwives. Mothers may contact us to talk about the standard of care they have received or to discuss if they have not felt supported. Midwives may contact us for professional advice and guidance.
Supervisor of Midwives on call: Salisbury District Hospital via switchboard 01722 336262

Page Last Updated: 02/12/2016 13:46 
Printed from Salisbury NHS Foundation Website