Home from home for mums-to-be at Forth Valley Royal

Mums-to-be can now give birth in more homely surroundings thanks to a makeover for part of Forth Valley Royal's maternity unit.

In a bid to improve the care of mums and their babies, NHS Forth Valley has invested in providing a less clinical atmosphere for this ward.

This include new beds, cube chairs which convert to a double bed for women to sleep on together with their partner, and new baths.

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Cabinet Secretary for Health Jeane Freeman visited today for the official opening – and met one of the first baby to be born in the Alongside Midwifery Unit (AMU).

Day-old Amelia Fraser slept in mother Megan Hawick’s (18) arms as the Scottish Minister spoke to the new mum and dad Gary Fraser (19).

Ms Freeman said: “We want to keep improving maternity and neonatal care in Scotland to ensure all mothers and babies are offered high quality service with a family-centred, safe and compassionate approach.

“Our national maternity strategy recommends all NHS Boards offer the full range of choice of place of birth and the Alongside Midwifery Unit is a great example of this taking shape.”

The AMU also has two rooms for water births and one other labour room. In addition, specially commissioned artwork and new light projection equipment have been installed to provide visual diversions and help create a more calming environment.

Ms Freeman also met pupils from Larbert High School who have created a new mural for the AMU corridor which was inspired by nature and the hospital’s woodland surroundings.

Last year just over 3,100 babies were born at Forth Valley Royal Hospital where the Women and Children’s Unit holds a Unicef Baby Friendly Award.