New mothers in Innisfail and Tully now have access to an extended midwifery support service to help further support them during the first few weeks with their new baby.

The extended midwifery service is available through both Innisfail and Tully hospitals and provides a visiting service to all new mothers in the first few critical weeks after birth.

The extended service will operate in addition to existing maternity services already available in the region.

Member for Mulgrave Curtis Pitt said the extended service meant new mothers now had a choice of either a home visit by maternity and child health staff or a phone contact following the birth of their baby.

“Bringing a new baby into the family can be a challenge, and having ready access to the necessary support during this time is really important,” Mr Pitt said.

“This new, extended midwifery service offers parents the opportunity to access additional support and information when they need it most during the first early weeks of parenting.

“The benefit of this new service is parents are able to utilise this support from their own homes, making it easier on families with newborns to get the support and advice they need.”

Mr Pitt said the expanded service was in addition to a range of maternity services already available at both Innisfail and Tully hospitals.

“Both Innisfail and Tully Hospitals provide antenatal clinics on Tuesdays of each week and additional antenatal classes also are available on Wednesday evenings through the two hospitals.

“In addition, lactation consultants are available should mothers require assistance with breastfeeding through Innisfail and Tully hospitals.”

Bookings for an appointment at the antenatal clinics or with a lactation consultant can be made by contacting either the Innisfail or Tully Hospital.

The extended midwifery service, and other similar services around the State, are part of an expansion of the State Government’s Universal Postnatal Contact Service announced in June 2008.

Once fully rolled out, the Universal Postnatal Contact Service will follow up every new mother after birth to ensure they are coping with parenthood’s early stresses.