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Maternity triage

White and blue fetal doppler

Maternity triage

Our maternity triage unit is here to help you day or night. It is located on the second floor at Hereford County Hospital.

If you have any concerns regarding your pregnancy (from 18 weeks onwards) or your baby (up until they are 28 days old).  A midwife will assess your concerns over the phone and decide whether you need to attend.

What we provide

Maternity triage is a 24 hour assessment area where women and their families can easily access and receive prompt care. You are welcome to bring one support person with you if you wish.

You will have an initial telephone conversation with a midwife. Following this telephone assessment you may be given advice which allows you to stay at home. Or you may be asked to attend triage to have a physical review with a midwife, and as required an obstetrician. 

Maternity triage has streamlined our maternity services. The area gives a consistent approach to accessing the maternity service through one telephone number 07990986517.

The area provides prompt diagnosis, treatment and care with the aim to improve women’s pregnancy, birth experience and birth outcomes.

If you are under 18 weeks pregnant the midwife will refer your concerns to either the GP,    community midwife or in an emergency advise that you attend Accident and Emergency.

How to find us

Maternity triage is located on the second floor at Hereford County Hospital. Follow signs for the maternity ward where you will see a separate entrance for maternity triage.  

Reasons to call triage

Reduced fetal movements

Reduced fetal movements describes a reduction in the usual amount of movements your baby makes, a loss of movements or weaker movements.  

There are a few reasons why you might feel your baby’s movements have changed, if baby is in a different position, if you are in a different position or where the position of your placenta is, for example, if your placenta is at the front of your tummy then you might feel less movements. 

You will probably have started to feel your baby move from around 16 to 20 weeks of pregnancy and from around 32 weeks you may have noticed a particular pattern of movements.  Your baby should continue with their pattern of movements up until they are born.  There is no evidence to say movements slow down prior to going into labour.  

If you do have concerns, it is important that you ring triage and come in for monitoring. Your baby’s wellbeing will be analysed on a CTG monitor (if you are over 26 weeks) and/or by ultrasound scan, which looks at baby’s growth, blood flow from the placenta to baby and the amniotic fluid around baby.  


Labour will start differently for each woman, but it usually starts with contractions. Once your contractions are coming regularly, around three times in every 10 minute period and are feeling consistently strong it may be time to call triage for assessment.  You can phone before this for advice or if you are struggling to cope at home. 

If your waters break

Your waters breaking can be one of the first signs of labour starting, but it isn’t always clear whether they have or not.  We ask that you phone triage if you think they might have broken and we will invite you in for assessment.  If your waters break and they have a green or brown colour to them, then it is very important that you come in straight away as this can indicate that your baby is distressed. 


If you have any fresh red bleeding in pregnancy then it is important to call triage straight away.  Before labour starts it is common to have a ‘show’, which will be a mucus discharge which may have blood in it and is normal. 

Abdominal pain

If you have any persistent continuous abdominal pain. 

Symptoms of pre-eclampsia

If you have any of the following symptoms then please call triage:

  • Persistent headache that doesn’t go away with paracetamol
  • Pain in your upper right abdomen
  • Sudden swelling of your feet, hands or face (if accompanied by above symptoms) 


If you have persistent itching to your hands, feet or abdomen. This can be a sign of a pregnancy related liver condition called Obstetric Cholestasis.

If you feeling extremely unwell

Signs of sepsis in pregnancy can include:

  • A temperature with hot flushes/chills
  • A rise in your heart rate and breathing
  • Flu like symptoms
  • Vomiting and diarrhoea with abdominal pain
  • Foul smelling discharge (or blood loss if you are postnatal)


Patient property

Read about keeping your personal/patient property safe whilst at the Trust on the main Maternity website page.


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