Update #4 – April 9, 2020
Changes to Visitor/Support Person Policies at Trillium Health Partners
As of 0800h April 8, 2020, there have been changes made to optimize the ability to socially distance at the Labour Assessment Units (LAU), Birthing Suites and Postpartum floors at both THP hospitals. We know these changes can be challenging, but they are being made to minimize risk and keep all pregnant people and infants as safe as possible.
Unchanged – any support person who is ill, has recently travelled outside of Canada, or who does not pass the COVID-19 screening questions will not be allowed to accompany the pregnant person into the hospital.
For LAU assessments – i.e. to confirm active labour, for NSTs, BP checks, ECV – no support people will be allowed to accompany the pregnant person into the hospital. Porters will help with wheelchair transport if pregnant person unable to walk. For those coming for labour assessment, your support person should plan to wait outside the hospital until it is confirmed you are being admitted and placed into a private space, at which point they can join you.
For clients with planned c-section – birthing person to be dropped off at hospital at designated time, prior to time of surgery. Once birthing person has been admitted and is in their own room, support person will be invited to join.
- There are NO in/out privileges for support person. Once you are on the birthing floor, you stay there until baby is born. That means you have to bring all items needed for the entire stay at once (bags, car seat, entertainment), including any food items for support person (no leaving the birthing floor for cigarette breaks, Tim Hortons, hospital cafeteria, etc.). Water is available for all, and there is some food (sandwiches, toast, drinks, popsicles, jello) available for labouring person if required. (Hospital food is adequate, but basic – we recommend bringing your favourites from home, where possible.)
If you are coming in active labour – support person must wait in car until admission is confirmed. Once pregnant person is admitted into their own room, the support person is invited to join them.
- There are NO in/out privileges for support person. Once you are on the birthing floor, you stay there until baby is born. That means you have to bring all items needed for the entire stay at once (bags, car seat, entertainment), including any food items for support person (no leaving the birthing floor for cigarette breaks, Tim Hortons, hospital cafeteria, etc.). Water is available for all, and there is some food available for labouring person if required. (Hospital food is adequate, but basic – we recommend bringing your favourites from home, where possible.)
- If your midwife has already assessed you at home and confirmed that you will be a “direct admit” to the floor, the support person can accompany you on arrival.
- Exceptions will be made for people who are very close to delivery at time of admission, on a case-by-case basis.
Following birth of baby:
- If all well with birthing person and baby, clients can opt for early discharge under your midwives’ supervision – leaving hospital/going home ~3h after birth. Please discuss this option further with your midwives.
- No visitors/support people allowed on the postpartum floors. If planning to stay for 24h, or if required to stay for nursing/medical support for birthing person or baby – support person NOT allowed to go to postpartum floor. Support people will have to leave the hospital at the time of transfer to the postpartum room, and can only return to pick up birthing person and baby at time of discharge.
Choice of Birthplace
At this time Midwives of Mississauga continues to support out of hospital birth for those clients for whom out of hospital birth is clinically appropriate and desired. Out of hospital birth can be a reasonable option to limit your exposure during this Pandemic. Midwives of Mississauga follow the home birth recommendation of the Association of Ontario Midwives, which includes screening all people who will be present at the birth for Coronavirus, limiting the number of people present in the area of the birth to one support person who meets screening criteria (other family members are asked to remain in other parts of your living away from our equipment and supplies and the birth), wearing PPE and taking all appropriate IPAC precautions. Please feel free to speak to your midwives about this option if you are interested.
Accessing Tetanus-Diptheria-Pertussis (TDaP) Vaccine
If you are having difficulty accessing this vaccine via your family doctor due to reduced clinic hours/only virtual appointments, please email your team to let your midwives know. There is a local Family Physician who is going to be offering a weekly clinic for those who can’t secure TDaP from other sources, that your midwives can coordinate access to, including possible drive-thru options.
Wearing Cloth Masks
Given the community spread of COVID-19, current recommendations are that ALL people should wear masks whenever in situations where socially distancing is not feasible (i.e. the grocery store).
A few important things to consider regarding wearing masks:
- Surgical masks and n95s are for healthcare providers – if you have any, please consider donating to the hospital
- Cloth masks can be purchased, or made quite simply. You can find some instructions online to sew your own or an easy no-sew option
- Please note: recommended fabric is 2 layers of cotton, please do not use HEPA filter vaccuum bags etc, as they are very difficult to breathe through!
- You will need more than one each (for wash/wear)
- It has to fit comfortably (once it is on your face no touching to adjust it!)
- Must be washed after each wear (regular soap and water)
- Change after 4-6h OR when it becomes soiled or damp.
- Use proper donning and doffing technique