28 February 2023

The new maternity triage service was accessed nearly 12,000 times by pregnant people across Hampshire and the Isle of Wight in January 2023 to assess their pregnancy related symptoms.

The new maternity content on the Healthier Together app went live across Hampshire and the Isle of Wight in November 2022. The app allows pregnant people to log any maternity concerns they may encounter during their pregnancy and have instant access to the help or advice that they need.

One pregnant woman who accessed the Healthier Together app said “The app is just really reassuring, and you know that you should be calling. The midwife was so lovely and knew my history she reassured me, I just found it really helpful.”

The app asks the user to assess their symptoms and it will then decide if they fall into a red, amber or green category. The outcomes of those categories are:

Red: These issues will be classed as an emergency and will require the pregnant person to call a health professional immediately.

Amber:  The user will be advised to call the maternity triage line if the concern is maternity related or will be advised to contact their GP surgery or call 111 if out of hours.

For both the red and amber categories the user can press a button on the app and they will automatically be connected to the service that has been recommended.

Green: The user will be directed to information to self-care at home.

If the user is directed to call the maternity triage line, they will be connected to a midwife either at South Central Ambulance Services (SCAS) in Otterbourne or at the Isle of Wight ambulance station. They will be triaged by midwives and, if required, advised to attend their local Maternity Day Assessment Unit (MDAU) for further assessment

Another pregnant woman who used the service said: “My phone call was answered straight away and the midwife was so reassuring. When I arrived, the unit was expecting me which was really nice.”

In January 2023, 8 per cent of those using the triage system were classified as red and were asked to call a health professional immediately. 83 per cent of those using the app were given advice and avoided having to contact or speak to a medical professional.

Holly Green, maternity lead for Healthier Together said: “The maternity triage line is a brilliant service allows pregnant people to have access to consistent advice, as and when they need it, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

“By using the app, it also reduces the number of phone calls at our day units which allows our midwives to focus on the patients and their babies currently in the department.”

The NHS Healthier Together app can be downloaded either from the Apple app store, or the Google Play store.

The NHS Healthier Together app also provides help and advice for children as well as pregnant people. If your child is unwell and needs to be seen by a healthcare professional, instead of having to call your GP surgery, your surgery may offer you the option to use the app to directly inform them about your child’s symptoms. They will then contact you to decide what needs to be done. And if you are seeking help when your GP surgery is shut, it will direct you to NHS 111.

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