PREGNANT Weipa women and their families can now receive extra support with the launch of new birthing classes.
The Weipa Midwifery Group Practice team are running the “Bump, Birth and Beyond” classes to help women and their families prepare for their birth and the new baby.
The classes are being held on a trial basis at the Weipa Hospital on Wednesday evenings – three weeks per month.
Weipa Midwifery Unit Manager Rukhsana Aziz said the classes were launched last month and were already proving popular.
She said the three sessions – which also cater for Napranum and Mapoon women – would cover pregnancy, birthing and post-natal care and were for both the woman and her partner or support person.
Some of the topics covered will include changes in the body during pregnancy, how to tell when you’re in labour, the types of pain relief available, empowering women and becoming a family – including support for partners.
“These types of classes are something that most maternity services run,” she said.
“During COVID-19 unfortunately they predominantly had to be run online, but I think in a small community like Weipa people really enjoy meeting in person.
“While we are currently not able to offer birthing in Weipa, we want to ensure local women are provided with the best possible information and education before they travel to give birth.
“We are a very close-knit team and we’re very keen to ensure all our women remain in good health.”
The Weipa MGP is currently caring for about 80 women in their area which includes Weipa, Napranum and Mapoon.
Torres and Cape Hospital and Health Service Director of Midwifery Gemma McMillan said these classes were another great way of ensuring women-centred continuity of care.
“The classes are run by one of the MGP midwives and are designed to give women and their families greater confidence in what can be both an exciting and daunting time,” she said.
“We are thrilled to be able to offer these to our local families as another way to bring care closer to home and cannot wait until we are able to offer birthing services here, too.”