M.03.02.Res.09 Health standards

  1. All pregnant prisoners including those on remand are given a full antenatal assessment by a registered midwife or medical officer with obstetric qualifications as soon as is practical or immediately if there is any concern for the welfare of the prisoner or her unborn child.
  2. Each women's prison has 24 hour access to, and liaison with, appropriate hospital and community based obstetric and midwifery services.
  3. Pregnant women who are known substance abusers are referred to a medical practitioner with obstetric qualifications within 24 hours of reception.
  4. Maternity care is selected in consultation with the prisoner and managed in a way that takes into account the particular risks and needs of the individual pregnant woman including her cultural and ethnic values.
  5. Where practicable, there is continuity of obstetric and / or midwife staff providing care before, during and after birth
  6. An individual health care plan is developed and incorporated into the prisoner’s health care management and sentence management plan. M.03.02.Form.02 Mother and child health care plan has been developed in consultation with health staff at the women's prison's as an aide or checklist to ensure all people involved in the prisoner's pregnancy (both ante and post natal care) are consulted where appropriate and kept well informed.
  7. Should an eligible prisoner apply for admission to a self-care unit or feeding and bonding facility, this must be noted on the plan. The plan must also note the prisoner’s intention regarding breastfeeding. All plans must be documented and made available to all parties involved, including the prisoner.
  8. Women assessed as being at risk of, or having, postnatal depression are monitored by staff and given appropriate support and counselling.
  9. Pregnant prisoners on a recognised substance abuse maintenance / withdrawal programme are continued on that programme without interruption, under the direction of the medical officer.
  10. A sterile pack for the emergency delivery of a child, which includes instructions on use, is available in the health centre.
  11. Each facility has access to external health providers with skills and experience in early childhood care.
  12. Arrangements are in place for prisoners to have access to health services for emergency and specialist treatment and care (The PS Health Services provide only primary health care to prisoners and not emergency and specialist treatment and care).