A MIDWIFERY scheme which helps women enjoy a smoother pregnancy celebrated its first year after transforming the way pregnant women are cared for.

The Emerald Team of midwives was launched at Barnsley Hospital last year as part of the NHS Better Births Scheme.

One of the initiatives set out by the scheme was the introduction of continuity midwifery, which a team of up to eight midwives would look after the same woman throughout her pregnancy.

Emerald Team is Barnsley Hospital’s flagship continuity midwifery scheme which delivers exactly that...

Throughout its first year the team have delivered 237 babies - with 28 born last month alone.

In Text Promo Image

Transformation lead midwife, Kerry Bushell, explained: “We are with a woman from the moment she becomes pregnant to up to two weeks after she has had her baby,”

“We have found that women are a lot happier when they see the same faces throughout their pregnancy, rather than getting someone new every time they go for a check-up or a scan.

“This can really help with the health of both the mum and baby as well as a smoother birth.

“We have found that the mothers are a lot calmer throughout their pregnancy and into their births which has increased the number of normal births and mother satisfaction.

“It’s really transformed midwifery within the hospital and we have seen some great outcomes - including women changing GPs to be with us.”

In response to the popularity and success of the Emerald Team, the hospital now has two more continuity midwife teams; Ruby, which was launched in December, and Sapphire, which was launched on Monday.

The midwifery team hope that 51 per cent of expectant women in Barnsley will be cared for by a continuity midwife scheme by 2021.

Sisters Emma Hames and Amy Man were cared for by the Emerald Team, with the same midwife delivering both women’s babies.

“As a first time mum I had a lot of questions but the midwives on Emerald were a godsend,” said Emma, 32.

“Even though my birth wasn’t exactly to plan, I felt so much calmer when I saw Tracey’s face. She is more like a friend than a midwife.”

Amy, 30, said: “I changed GPs so that I could be cared for by the Emerald team and they made my pregnancy smooth and calm and they really respected my wishes.

“They are absolutely amazing and were there for us every step of the way.”