Postnatal Care

Our postnatal care services are here to support you and your newborn baby as you start your life together.
Arrow In this section

What to expect after your baby is born

As soon as you have given birth, a number of tests will be carried out to make sure your baby is healthy. If so, you and your baby will be transferred to one of our postnatal wards so that we can monitor you and help you to prepare for discharge.

If your baby needs further tests or support, they will be transferred to Neonatal Unit, which is responsible for the care of sick newborn babies, including those born prematurely. Read more about the Neonatal Unit and Neonatal Support Group.

Postnatal Ward C2

Ward C2 is a 29-bed postnatal ward based designed to allow new mothers to rest following birth and get to know their babies in a secure and supportive environment. The ward is staffed 24 hours a day by Midwives who are supported by a Health Care Assistant and have access to Consultants should anyone on the ward require additional urgent attention.

If you are visiting someone on Ward C2, please see check our visiting hours page for visiting times and any rules visitors must follow when visiting one of our wards. If you have any questions about staying on Ward C2 or visiting, please contact the Postnatal Reception on 0161 291 5042.

Recovery Ward

The Recovery Ward is for women who have had a caesarean birth. A caesarean is major abdominal surgery and if you have one, you will need to be closely monitored afterwards. The amount of time you will need to be on Recovery depends on whether or not the surgery was carried out under epidural or spinal anaesthetic (where you remain awake) or under general anaesthetic (where you are asleep). The Recovery ward sits alongside our Delivery Suite and any woman who is having a caesarean procedure will be booked into the Delivery Suite first.

Visiting is not allowed on the Recovery ward. Please phone 0161 291 2945 if you would like an update about a friend or relative.

Newborn baby checks

Initial checks

A number of tests are carried out on newborn babies to check your baby has adapted to life outside the womb. The examination is carried out on all newborn babies, so you shouldn’t worry about any of the tests.

The Midwife will undress your baby and check them from head to toe. They will listen to your baby’s heart and lungs, and check your baby’s hips as well as looking into their eyes and checking your baby’s reflexes. A hearing test is also carried out, although this might be done separately from the main checks.

A heel prick blood test is also done to check for hypothyroidism, phenylketonuria, cystic fibrosis or a haemoglobinopathy. This is carried out when your baby is one week old. All babies have a second set of tests when they are between six and eight weeks old. This is because some babies take longer to adapt to living outside of the womb. This check will usually be carried out by your GP.

Your baby’s development timeline

The NHS Choices website has an excellent birth-to-five timeline which explains what you should expect in the first five years of your baby’s life. It covers the key milestones in your baby’s development into childhood and what medical tests and vaccinations are available.