Free Public Lecture on Water Immersion for Labour at UMHL

A free public lecture on Water Immersion for Labour  at University Maternity Hospital Limerick takes place on Tuesday, April 17th (6pm) at the Clinical Education and Research Centre, University Hospital Limerick. 

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Pictured ahead of the introduction of Water Immersion in Labour at University Maternity Hospital Limerick were Sandra O’Connor, CMM3 Labour Ward/Theatre; Mary Bolger, Staff Midwife; Joan Fitzgibbon, CMM2 Labour Ward; Aidene Rogers, Staff Midwife; Amy Barry, Student Midwife; Dr Mark Skehan, Consultant Obstetrician/Gynaecologist; Bernadette Toolan, Clinical Placement Co-ordinator, Midwifery and Helen Coe, CMM3, Community Midwifery.

The series of lectures forms part of UL Hospitals Healthy Ireland programme, which commits the group to greater public engagement and more educational events.

Water Immersion for Labour is to be introduced at the end of next month for normal-risk women in the newly refurbished home birthing room at UMHL.  Water immersion is part of a range of supports provided in the home birthing room to facilitate natural labour.

A range of speakers from the mutidisciplinary team at UMHL will speak about the new service at next Tuesday evening's lecture.

Sandra O’Connor, Clinical Midwifery Manager 3, Labour Ward/Theatre, said the main driver behind the refurbishment of the home birthing room was requests from women and the publication of The National Maternity Strategy 2016-2026. 

Said Eileen Ronan Acting Director of Midwifery, “The National Maternity Strategy identifies three care pathways in its model of care, based on the risk profile of women.   The supported care pathway is intended for normal-risk women, with midwives leading and providing care within a multidisciplinary framework.  With this in mind, the opening of the refurbished home birthing room is welcomed.”

“The first priority is always safe care, therefore we have criteria to facilitate the use of the pool.  An information leaflet is being developed for women, and staff training is progressing. There is already significant interest from women in the Mid-West for the new service.”

“The pool is only one element of the new space for holistic care aimed at supporting normal birth. The bed does not dominate the room in anyway. Women can move from the floor to leaning against the bed, to the shower to using the ball, “ added Ms Ronan.

Dr Mark Skehan, Consultant Obstetrician/Gynaecologist, said the team at UMHL is looking forward to opening the new labour room to women. 

“Water immersion and hydrotherapy can be quite effective for pain relief and a larger element of all of this will be using the room for more natural processes and trying to get more natural birth. We have in addition to the bath, an adjoining shower room, a birthing cube, and birthing balls. This is something of a prototype for us and if it is successful and demand increases, we hope to do the same thing in another labour room, said Dr Skehan.

*Please note the venue for this lecture is University Hospital Limerick (Dooradoyle) and not University Maternity Hospital Limerick. The CERC Building is located adjacent to the new Emergency Department/Critical Care Block at UHL. For ease of access, please use car parks 2 and 3 if arriving by car.

Last updated on: 12 / 04 / 2018