The Rotunda Hospital has said it will request “nominated companions” who are attending labour or birth with pregnant women to “provide their COVID pass as part of our safety screening process at our front entrance, from 1st December.”
The maternity hospital said “one named, nominated companion may join for appointments, labour & birth, & on inpatient wards” but that because NPHET had “recommended that the ‘COVID Pass/Certificate’ be adopted as a requirement for visitation to healthcare settings” they would be seeking the pass from companions attending the hospital.
— Jane Holland 🌸 MD PhD MRCSI (@drjaneholland) November 2, 2021
Women described the move as “dehumanising” and said that the Covid-19 restrictions had “already placed severe strain on their mental health during pregnancy”.
“We had so many restrictions on everything during this pregnancy so far and this would be a dehumanising move,” one mother told Gript. “This should be a beautiful time for both me and my husband but instead he’s missed scans and now we’re hearing he might not be able to attend the birth of our son. It’s uncalled for and very upswetting.”
The HPSC in its revised guidelines (November 1st ) on Guidance on Access to Acute Hospitals said that proof of vaccination for a “nominated support partner” for access to maternity services.
“A nominated support partner plays a central part in supporting a person using maternity services. The support person also has a right to be present and to participate in the care process to the greatest practical degree,” it says.
“Testing of asymptomatic nominated support partners in advance of access is not generally required as outlined above. Proof of vaccination of nominated support partners in advance of access is not required.”