These certainly are interesting times and for each person there are a range of circumstances, emotions, and questions around your pregnancy and covid-19.
We want to start by re-assuring you that Dr Holland is staying up to date with the latest health advice around covid-19 and being pro-active in making any changes to your treatment and care that are advised.
Keeping you safe
Patients Only. From Monday 23 March we are asking that only our patient attends appointments, which means no partners, children or support persons. This allows us to maintain the area needed for each person at an indoor venue. We understand that this may be disappointing to some as sharing ultrasounds with loved ones and making decisions together is key. Dr Holland is happy for you to use your own Facetime (or like service) to include your loved one during appointments if you wish.
Stay home if you’re unwell. If you become unwell before your appointment in any way, please contact us and we will organise to have your appointment via phone or via skype. It is very important to not attend your appointment if you are unwell.
Health Questionnaire. Our staff will contact you the day before each of your appointments to ask several health-related questions prior to your appointment.
Extra cleaning. We have already made changes in rooms to keep you and our staff safe and virus free. Our staff have implemented an additional disinfection routine that continues throughout each day to clean surfaces and regularly touched surfaces.
Social distancing. We have implemented 1.5m social distancing in the waiting room and have limited our maximum number of patients waiting in consideration of the 4 square meters per person recommended for indoor venues. We are limited to six waiting patients. If we have more than this at any given time, we may ask you to wait in your car or the outside area around our building.
Appointment by phone or Skype. We are now offering phone or video consults to patients who are unwell or on request. If you would prefer to have your appointment over the phone please let us know and we will organise that. Dr Holland performs video consults via Skype.
Where to source reliable information
Let us start by saying there is a lot of information available to be absorbed right now, some reliable and some sensationalist. The same can be said about those who are giving their medical opinion. We are advocates of spreading calm not fear, for your own mental health we recommend that you try and do the same.
Covid-19 and Pregnancy Fact Sheet. Dr Holland has prepared a fact sheet which has been update on the 29 March 2020, based on the recommendations of the College of Obstetrics and Gynaecology and the Government Health Department, which is attached to this email. This fact sheet may answer many of the questions you have specifically regarding your pregnancy and the Covid-19 virus. This information is also available on our website.
Reliable sources. It is important to find a way to stay up to date, without exposing yourself to hype or misinformation. We are not the authority on what is correct and what is incorrect but here is a selection of sources that we find accurate:
Delivery at Newcastle Private Hospital. On the 16 March we received a letter (attached) from the Acting General Manager of Newcastle Private Hospital outlining their temporary measures to limit visitors to the hospital, which will include your delivery. Please read the attached letter for more information.
Dr Holland’s obstetric cover. Dr Holland is part of Newcastle Obstetrics, a group of Newcastle obstetricians who have a long-standing arrangement to care for each other’s patients in the event of annual leave, weekend roster or where the doctors become unwell. Since Covid-19 this group has been working behind the scenes to consider any scenario and have plans in place to ensure that your obstetric care continues.
We will continue to update you via email, sms, on our website and via our social media platforms for the duration of the pandemic.