Maria is 37 years old. You are pregnant with your second baby and your due date is approaching. To the concerns that appear in the last weeks of pregnancy in any woman, Maria is now joined by the current situation with the coronavirus pandemic: will it affect her or her baby? Will hospital care change in the lake? Can she be accompanied? Will your birth plan be followed? There are surely many more women with these consultations. We will try to respond to these concerns and resolve the doubts of pregnant women before giving birth in time of coronavirus.
According to current data, in pregnant women the disease occurs the same as in any adult, and also does not seem to affect the baby during pregnancy or delivery, so on that side, Maria can be calm.
As for how the pregnancy will be monitored in the midst of these special circumstances, it must be said that this depends on the organization of each center; In general, consultations are kept for diagnostic tests, such as ultrasound or laboratory tests, but it is recommended that the pregnant woman attend them alone, to limit the exposure of health personnel to the minimum number of people that is essential. Consultations to collect results, or for general follow-up, are being made by telephone in many centers.
The first question, when to go to the hospital? Midwives always tell you to wait at home as long as possible, to enter the active phase of labor (this is from 4 or 5 cm of dilation), when the delivery is well established. Thus the stay in the dilation will be shorter.
And how to recognize that phase? A good premise is, 'if you have doubts, you can wait', because when you are in frank labor, you know it (in general, although you already know that this is not math!): You have to wait until you have contractions every 3-4 minutes, intense and regular. In the current situation this is even more important, since the fewer visits to the emergency room due to 'false alarms' you have, the less you will expose yourself to a possible contagion.
If you still have to go to the emergency room for whatever reason, each center has designed an itinerary in which the patients who come for respiratory symptoms are separated from the rest of the patients. And we also remind you that many hospitals have a different entrance for obstetric / gynecological emergencies, so if you have to go, do it with caution but without fear.
If, at the time of delivery, Maria does not have a fever or respiratory symptoms, delivery care will not vary. What can vary is the 'infrastructure', the healthcare environment. It is likely that all the staff who treat her wear a surgical mask, but as it circulates on networks these days, 'you will know that they smile at you when their eyes roll.' María may be accompanied by the person she chooses, but she must always be the same, and she will have to take extreme hygiene measures when entering and leaving the room.
In the dilation / delivery rooms, there will be no different care, the same care will be carried out as always. And the same at the time of birth.
Where you can notice differences will be in the hospitalization floor: the main one is that VISITS ARE NOT ALLOWED. None, at any time. To preserve the health of all people: mainly mothers and babies, but also other family members and health personnel. We have to be responsible for each other.
This may shock us because we are used to seeing maternity plants full of relatives, little ones running around, bouquets of flowers, noise ... and now they are empty! Well, let's take it as a positive point, you will have time to get to know your baby, start breastfeeding (if you decide so) without pressure or various opinions, your baby will only know your arms in his first days ... An encounter with the most peaceful world!
In some hospitals you will have to share a room, because the services have been restructured in the face of the avalanche of hospitalized patients. In others it was like that before.
And another point in favor that this epidemic can bring us is early discharge: in healthy women, who have given birth to a healthy baby without complications, discharge from the hospital can be assessed at 24 hours. This should always be the case, but the truth is that very few hospitals do. However, in this situation, we all know that the best place for a healthy woman with her healthy baby is as far as possible from the hospital, at home. They can offer it to you or you can request it yourself!
And once home, the visitation restriction must follow. We must not forget that we are still in a special situation, so grandparents, cousins, uncles will have to wait to meet the baby. Take advantage of this time to nest, get to know each other, couple, readjust the family and find the place of each one. The days of walking, the hugs, the hugs will return. And while… we wash our hands well!
Finally, Maria is presented with another unknown: What will you do with your oldest daughter? You cannot take her to the hospital, it is not recommended in any case, especially in a pandemic situation; but on the other hand, being in isolation, he cannot be with his grandparents either. So, what to do?
The reality is that there is no correct decision, each family must do what they consider most appropriate in their particular case. We know the importance of the woman being able to be accompanied during childbirth by the person she chooses, who gives her confidence and security. But it is also vital to maintain isolation measures so that the coronavirus infection can be controlled.
There are many factors to consider: Have we had recent contact with a possible case of coronavirus? Is our basic health adequate? What family member / person in our environment would take care of the girl if necessary? How is your basic health? And that of the rest of the people in your family nucleus? Have you had recent contact with a possible case of coronavirus? That is, it is not the same as the person who is going to take care of the older sister is her grandmother, or her uncle, who lives alone, or with more children. Based on these issues, and any other particularity that concerns them, each family will make the most appropriate decision in their case.
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