San Obstetricians welcome the arrival of online antenatal education of San parents-to-be
The San Hospital has partnered with Nourish Baby to provide soon-to-be-San parents with complimentary online education classes to help prepare for the birth of their baby and transition into parenthood. With parents often anxious for their new arrival and sometimes feeling ill-equipped antenatal education is considered vital for allaying fear, instilling confidence and answering any questions parents-to-be may have.
Talking about antenatal education generally, and as an obstetrician of 30 years’ experience who has delivered over 12,500 babies, Dr John Keogh says antenatal education is a vital part of the pregnancy journey.
"One of the things that can really get in the way of people is fear" says Dr Keogh. “Fear often comes from not knowing what might happen. Antenatal education gives you information about what might happen and about strategies that might be employed to handle those situations. Walking into the birthing suite with confidence after having done the antenatal education is 80% of the battle won."
San Obstetrician and Gynaecologist Dr Andrew Booker agrees about the benefits.
"It is vital for preparing for pregnancy, to prepare for birth, and to prepare for looking after your family, a job we all learn through trial and error" says Dr Booker. "It is like everything - where you have education, fear goes away. Knowledge helps eradicate that anxiety and that fear."
Dr Booker also says that antenatal education provides pregnant women with a support network and opportunity to connect with other mums. "It used to be said that it takes a village to raise a child, and now we no longer live in villages the raising of children is in some ways more difficult because people feel isolated. I think in some ways these online education classes enable us to be connected when we are in separate spaces. It enables people to feel like they’re not the only ones going through difficult challenges such as their baby not settling or having breast feeding difficulties. It also enables them to tap into answers at any time."
The Nourish Baby Learning Hub offers information covering topics including choices in childbirth, pain relief options, breast feeding tips via a range of written and video resources.
San Midwife and Lactation Specialist Alison Edgecombe says the new online program complements in-person classes traditionally offered during pregnancy and while staying on the maternity ward.
"It empowers people to make informed decisions about their choices in child birth, the pain relief available to them, how to care for their newborns and breast feeding. There is a lot of information out there and you have people telling you different things, that’s why doing some form of antenatal education is helpful to sort through what might be important to women and their partners. They can be correctly informed and prepared, both physically and emotionally."
The online classes are available to pre-booked San maternity patients and are available thanks to a through a collaboration between Sydney Adventist Hospital and Nourish Baby. The online antenatal classes offered are a complimentary alternative to the regular group classes previously held by San Midwives and experts but temporarily suspended to social distancing requirements.
For more information and to find out how to register for the classes please see www.sah.org.au/maternity-nourishbaby.