We would like to reassure you that we are closely monitoring the situation and working with the government and NHS.
For guidance on coronavirus and the latest information for Devon, visit Devon County Council’s coronavirus (COVID-19) advice pages.
Public Health Nursing antenatal information
We recognise that this is an exciting and somewhat challenging time for parents who are expecting a baby. It is very important to us that we are able to support families in a meaningful way, even more so given the challenges at this time.
Your Health Visitor
Until your baby is around ten days old you and your baby’s care remains under the care of your midwife. Your Health Visitor will arrange to meet you when your baby is around two weeks old, often after your midwife has discharged you and your baby from their care. At this contact they will undertake an assessment of both yourself and your baby to ensure that our service gives you the appropriate support for your needs.
- What is a Health Visitor?
- Institute of Health Visiting parenting resources
- DCC Public Health Nursing Website
Your Health Visitors are part of a wider Public Health Nursing service that includes community health workers and school nurses. Devon Public Health Nursing provides a 0-19 service for children across Devon County Council area.
How to contact your Health Visitor
- Email: email the relevant Public Health Nursing Hub where a Health Visitor will respond to your query
- Text: text us for health-based advice via our Chat health number; 07520 631721 and receive a response back via text. This number cannot be used to book or rearrange appointment times.
- Phone: phone the relevant Public Health Nursing Hub to discuss any queries with a Health Visitor.
Support for new parents
The birth of a parent begins during pregnancy. There is support available for you in many different forms, to help you right from the beginning of your pregnancy and throughout.
Devon Public Health Nursing offer digital group sessions for parents to attend, covering a range of experiences that parents might face during the early days. These friendly virtual parent sessions are undertaken via Microsoft Teams and facilitated usually by one of our Community Health Workers. We call this Virtual Family Focus.
Virtual Family Focus sessions
Antenatally you may want to consider attending the following virtual family focus sessions:
- Focus on Starting off well with feeding
- Focus on responsive parenting sessions.
To book your place email your area hub (email addresses above in Public Health Nurse Contact Details) stating your name, email address and which session you would like to attend. We will then send you an invite link.
Add links to new events page when available (assuming we go down that route)
Additional parenting support
You can also access an online course that supports you in understanding your baby at a variety of different points in their life:
All you need to get started is your access code, an up-to-date internet browser on a computer, laptop, tablet or smartphone (the local libraries or your school may be able to provide access to this), and an email address. Go to the website www.inourplace.co.uk and apply the code Tamar when prompted. You’ll be asked for your email address and a password of your choice. This is so that you can return to the site, sign in and your account will remember that you have access to the course(s) and will resume from where you last left the course.
Contacting your Children’s Centre
Children’s centres offer families targeted support for a variety of situations. Children’s centres in Devon provide Early Help services to the whole family, from pregnancy through to age 19, when families most need support using the ‘team around the family’ approach.
Action for Children run the Children’s Centres in the Devon County Council area
- Children’s Centres
- Find your nearest Children’s Centre
There’s also a fantastic online option where you can talk to a family practitioner about a range of questions that you may have
Looking after yourself
If you yourself are well then it can be easier to cope with the challenges a baby might bring. It is really important to take time for your own mental wellbeing.
GRAPHIC? – need a better version than the one in the pdf if we want to use here
Many parents spend the time before their baby arrives preparing their home environment. Thinking about safe sleeping is really important as part of this preparation. The Lullaby Trust provide key safety information for you to consider in this preparation time.
They also have a really useful video
Covid-19 is providing parents with a variety of challenges. We want to maintain your safety and support you through the provision of key information.
Government based information sources specifically about Covid-19
In these uncertain times the government guidance is changing regularly in relation to keeping yourself and your family safe from Covid-19. Here are some key links:
Our organisation guidance around covid-19 and contacts
As a Local Authority service delivering healthcare we work within the guidelines of the government. Before any contact with yourselves we will ensure that we are following the guidelines at that time.
Covid-19: caring for your baby and pregnancy
The Lullaby Trust provide essential information about caring for your baby in pregnancy and in those early days particularly now during Covid-19. The advice is changing frequently so ensure you are aware of the most recent guidance.
Key points are:
- Continue to keep all your antenatal appointments while you are well (don’t be surprised if some of these are by phone).
- If you are unwell with signs of coronavirus (COVID-19) please call 111 and make sure you tell them that you are pregnant.
Other useful links
There’s lots of information that you may find useful to look at before your baby arrives (can we link to this page, rather than recreating the table in the pdf you currently send out? Do this page need reviewing/updating?)
If you would like to provide us with any feedback on any part of our service at this time we would be delighted to receive it.
Please complete our simple feedback form – this can also be accessed by scanning the QR code.