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Call the midwife – RD&E launches new phone number for mums-to-be


A new 24 hour maternity triage service is set to launch at the Royal Devon and Exeter Hospital, which will give expectant mums direct access to support from qualified midwives if they have concerns about their pregnancy.

The service, which opens on 23rd January, includes a new triage team of experienced midwives, a triage unit within the Ante/Postnatal Ward and a dedicated 24 hour phone number to call for help and guidance.

The triage service will ensure mums-to-be receive consistent and timely advice over the phone from a midwife who can decide whether they need to come in to the unit for further assessment. The phone number can also be used by GP’s and community midwives to refer patients to the RD&E for further examination.

In an emergency, patients should always dial 999 in the first instance. 

The new set up marks a change from the current service provision, where women who require a review are seen either on the Fetal and Maternal Assessment Unit (FMAU) or on the Labour Ward.   

It is hoped that the new triage service will provide a simpler and more efficient service to patients and reduce unnecessary admissions to the hospital by ensuring women are accessing right maternity service for their needs.

Jo Bassett, Senior Midwife at the Royal Devon and Exeter NHS Foundation Trust, said:
“We are really pleased to be able to offer this new service. We feel that by offering consistent advice via one telephone line will improve the information given and the subsequent care that women using our service will receive. It also means that women will be seen in the right location by the most appropriate person and this fits in with the Trust agenda to ensure seamless working across services.”

The new triage team will be made up of midwives who currently work in FMAU outpatients and the wider maternity service. The assessment area will utilise available space on the Ante/Postnatal Ward in the Centre for Women’s Health.

From 23rd January 2017, patients, GP’s or community midwives wishing to contact the maternity triage service should phone 01392 406616.

Call 111 when its less than urgent