Post-Natal Care in the United Kingdom

Find out about Post-natal care for your newborn baby...

Women in Britain are discharged from hospital with newborn babies relatively early compared to their European counterparts (in France women stay in hospital for an average of five days), but they do receive help at home. A midwife visits the new mother at home up to five times in the first ten days, to check that the baby is putting on weight and the mother is managing to feed the baby. If they feel it is necessary, however, midwives can visit for up to 28 days.

A health visitor is assigned to the mother and baby at around two weeks, and will remain a constant support until the baby is around five years old. A health check book is given to the parents, which is a record of the baby's vaccinations and other information.

The health visitor works closely with other health professionals, and liaise with the parents' GP, who will check the mother's health six weeks after the birth.

Other useful organisations, such as the National Childbirth Trust, run postnatal support groups and a helpline.

Vaccinations

Doctors advise parents to immunise their babies against a number of diseases. Although a majority of families do follow immunisation programmes, they are not obligatory.