During your pregnancy you may see some or all of these members of our integrated maternity team. If you are unsure as to what our role is, please ask. We will all be more than happy to answer any queries and concerns you may have.
The word midwife means "with woman". A midwife
can be male or female and their role is to look after you
and your baby's wellbeing during pregnancy, labour and the period
after your baby is born. This includes measures aimed at
preventing health problems in pregnancy, the detection of abnormal
conditions and requesting medical assistance when necessary.
A consultant obstetrician is a doctor who has successfully
completed specialised training in the management of women who have
more complicated pregnancies, labours and the post natal period.
Southend Hospital is a university teaching hospital and you may
also meet doctors who are working in the structured specialist
training programme supported by the consultants.
Student midwives work alongside experienced midwives on
placements throughout the hospital and community settings. They are
undertaking a course of study at Anglia Ruskin University. They
work under close supervision and only undertake tasks they have
been trained to do. If you would prefer not to have a student
midwife participating in your care please discuss this with your
Maternity support worker [MSW]
An MSW is employed to work both within the hospital and the
community setting. In all settings they are a very important member
of the integrated maternity team. They will work without the need
for direct supervision in some circumstances, however they will
always have very clear channels of communication with a midwife on
a daily basis to ensure any concerns around the you or your baby's
care are escalated appropriately.
Health care assistant [HCA]
An HCA is employed predominately in the hospital setting
ensuring that the physical needs of those accessing our care are
met. They may undertake limited clinical duties, for example
taking your blood pressure.
These staff work tirelessly to keep the wards clean and tidy and
the equipment used in your care both clean and functioning
The clerical staff are the first point of contact for patients
and visitors to the trust. They work as key members of the
reception and ward teams, providing administrative support and
cover across maternity, gynaecology clinics and maternity
wards. Their duties include:
- Maintaining patient records relating to each specific clinic,
using information supplied by clinician/s.
- Making appointments for all patients attending clinics and
issue appointment letters.
- Answering the telephone
Anaesthetists are doctors who have completed their medical
training and chosen to complete further training to become an
anaesthetist. You will see these doctors if you want an epidural or
need to go to the operating theatre.
A paediatrician is a doctor who undertakes the medical care of
infants and children.
The health visitor is a qualified registered nurse, midwife,
children's nurse or psychiatric nurse with specialist
qualifications in community health, which includes child health,
health promotion and education. Your health visitor has
unique professional expertise to deliver universal child and family
health services. She will work closely with your local children's
centres and other partners to ensure that all families have access
to the support they need when children are in their early years.
This is a partnership between you both focusing on your own and
your child's health and well being. She will help families stay in
touch with wider sources of support and lead on health improvement
on subjects such as healthy eating, accident prevention and
All staff you meet during your pregnancy, the birth of
your baby and after your baby is born should introduce themselves
to you. All will be wearing some form of identification badge. If
you do not know who the person undertaking your care or visiting
you at home is please do not be afraid to ask them for their name
and role in your care.