A NEW midwifery service has been launched in East Renfrewshire.

Pregnant women can now get support from NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde (NHSGGC) midwives at Eastwood Health and Care Centre.

Staff began clinics this week and there will be a phased approach to introducing antenatal appointments locally, with some women from Clarkston, Eaglesham, Giffnock and Newton Mearns initially being offered an appointment.

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This will be expanded as more resources and clinic space are made available.

Appointments are taking place on Mondays, Thursdays and Fridays, with antenatal classes held on Tuesday afternoons.

It is a welcome addition to the health centre, which already hosts GP surgeries, vaccination clinics, physiotherapy and podiatry services, as well as mental health appointments.

Councillor Katie Pragnell, East Renfrewshire's health and social care services convener, said: “I am very pleased that we are now hosting this service.

"I’ve no doubt that it will be welcomed by pregnant women in the area.

"Antenatal appointments have been offered at Barrhead Health Centre for a number of years, so it feels natural to also bring them to Eastwood.

“I’d like to give a big welcome to all the midwives who will be working out of the health centre. We’re delighted they are joining the local health and care family.”

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Dr Mary Ross-Davie, director of midwifery at NHSGGC, added: “We are focusing throughout 2024 on making maternity care as accessible as possible to women across our area and bringing antenatal midwifery appointments to local clinics in Eastwood Health and Care Centre is part of that work.

“Each of the clinics will generally be provided by the same midwife. This will mean women will have the opportunity to really get to know their midwife through their pregnancy journey.

"At the appointments, the midwife will undertake all of the checks that are needed to ensure that all is well, with blood pressure, urine and blood tests, feeding back any results, measuring the baby’s growth and listening to the baby’s heartbeat.

"The midwife can also provide answers to any questions and help women begin to make plans for their birth.

“Booking appointments will still take place at the New Victoria and routine scans at the chosen birth hospital.

“We look forward to working locally and meeting all the mums-to-be.”

Appointments at Eastwood Health and Care Centre will be issued based on postcodes, so there is no need to call your existing midwife.

Women who have just found out they are pregnant can self-refer for maternity services by completing an online form at www.nhsggc.scot/meetyourmidwife or calling 0141 347 8422.

As soon as you have had a positive pregnancy test, it is recommended that you start taking folic acid and vitamin D supplements.

Your local pharmacy can advise you on how much to take.