We care for women who need to be in hospital for part of their pregnancy for closer observation and investigations, and those women who are undergoing induction of labour.
About the ward
This information is intended to inform you about what to expect during your stay on Sara ward.
The ward has a total of 22 beds, 4 shared bays and 5 individual side rooms.
The side rooms are used primarily for those with clinical needs, but there are times when we are able to offer one of these at the cost of £150 per night to the patient. If a side room is required for clinical reasons, then you may be asked to return to a bay. Side room 5 is designed for disabled access.
During the day, the ward is usually staffed by three midwives and two maternity care assistants (MCAs). Overnight, there are three midwives and two MCAs. Shift handover takes place from 07:45 to 08:15 in the morning, and 19:45 to 20:15 in the evening.
Your care on Sara Ward
Sara ward primarily cares for women and birthing people who require inpatient care during their pregnancy for a wide range of different obstetric and medical reasons or who require an induction of labour.
Occasionally there are postnatal admissions to Sara ward.
Depending on the reason for your admission you may require regular observations, blood and urine tests, and sometimes medication. Depending on your stage of pregnancy and your individual circumstances, your baby may also need monitoring using a cardiotocograph (CTG) which records contractions and your baby’s heart rate.
If ultrasound scans are required these will be performed in either the Rosie ultrasound department or in the fetal medicine department when a slot is available.
Patients are allocated to one of four teams of obstetric doctors on admission. Monday to Friday each team will review their individual patients daily, they will discuss whether any tests or investigations may be required that day, and whether you are suitable to be discharged home.
On Saturday and Sunday the consultant and registrar who are covering the delivery unit and wards will review all patients on the ward.
If you are admitted for induction of labour you may not require a daily doctor’s review.
Induction of labour
If you are coming to Sara ward for induction of labour, you will usually stay in our induction of labour bay.
You will be given the opportunity to watch a short film about the induction of labour process and be provided with our Induction of Labour Patient Information Leaflet, if you have not already received this. A midwife will be able to answer any questions you have about the process before your induction is commenced. You will remain on Sara ward until transfer to the Delivery Unit when either labour establishes or an artificial rupture of membranes (ARM) can be performed, or if your waters have broken spontaneously.
Due to the nature of maternity care, there may be occasions when your induction of labour has to be delayed or postponed in order to maintain the safety of all women and birthing people attending the Rosie. This is because it is impossible to predict how many people will go into labour at any one time, or when the unit may receive an emergency admission. If this happens we will keep you informed as regularly as we can and we will continue with your induction as soon as it is safe to do so.
Your bed area and your belongings
Each bed space has a bed, cabinet, table and chair.
Please place belongings in the cabinet, or on or under the chair, so that bags do not block access to the bed. Staff may need to give care to you in an emergency and need clear access.
If you are staying over a period of a few days, please ask your partner to take home items you are not using.
There are multiple showers and toilets available on the ward. These are for patient use only. Visitors’ toilets are located outside the ward’s entrance doors.
Each bed area has a buzzer to help you get assistance from the ward staff. You are also welcome to come to the midwives' station, where questions can be answered. There is a light switch and dimmer on the same control as the buzzer for you to use.
There are some fans available on the ward; if you require one, staff will endeavour to get one for you. Other personal electrical items should not be plugged in without discussion with your midwife, as they may present a fire hazard. All items including phones are brought into hospital at your own risk and the trust is not able to take responsibility for any lost or damaged items.
You are expected to provide your own toiletries and sanitary towels.
We ask that patients and visitors wear appropriate footwear when moving around the ward, to reduce the risk of slips, trips or falls.
To aid patients to sleep eye masks and earplugs are available at the midwives’ station.
The ward can offer you three meals a day, all of which are self-service. Partners / visitors are able to collect meals on your behalf. If you require assistance with getting a meal, please use the call bell and ask a member of staff for assistance. All meals can be collected from the dining room. Meals can be eaten by the bed or in the dining room. All food is for patients only.
Breakfast (toast, cereals, fruit) 06:00 - 10:00
Lunch (hot food or sandwiches) 12:00 - 12:45
Dinner (hot food or sandwiches) 17:00 - 17:45
Tea, coffee and hot chocolate are available at any time from the trolley outside the dining room. Opposite bay 7 there is a water dispenser, squash, and a trolley with jugs of water.
There are snacks available at all times in the dining room.
The smaller fridge in the dining room is provided if you wish to bring in your own food. Food must be double bagged and labelled with your name, hospital number and the date it is put in the fridge. Labels and bags are provided in the dining room.
If you remain as an inpatient for a long period during your pregnancy or if your baby has to be delivered early, you may miss out on antenatal education classes. The midwives on the ward are able to discuss any aspect of your pregnancy with you, please ask at any time. Topics to consider include infant feeding and birth preferences, as outlined in pages 35 and 36 of your antenatal care record (hand held notes).
Patient information leaflets are also available covering a variety of topics, which may be useful depending on your individual circumstances.
Safety and security
The main entrance doors to Sara ward are locked at all times. Hospital staffs enter by means of an ID badge scanner. Patients and visitors ring the doorbell and are spoken to via intercom, to establish who they are and why they are coming into the ward, before they can enter.
Information about patients is kept confidential. Patients and their families are welcome to introduce yourselves to others on the ward but staff will never give out any of details without a patients express permission. No information about mothers and babies on the ward is given to the public by telephone.
Ward clerks and domestic staff are also based on the ward, with input from pharmacy, procurement and estates to ensure the smooth running and cleanliness of the ward.
How to find us
Head straight through the Rosie reception area, past the Pavilion cafe. Take lift B or the stairs to level 3 and follow the signs to Sara ward, which is opposite the delivery unit.
Non-urgent advice: Visiting information
Visiting times for inpatient stays and restrictions on who may accompany you for outpatient appointments may be affected by current Covid-19 visiting restrictions.
A named support person / birth partner is welcome on the ward any time, day or night. If you would like your named support person to stay overnight, we do require them to sign a form which outlines our policy for accompanying you overnight. Your midwife can provide you with this. It is your choice who you have to stay with you – your partner, a close friend, relative or doula. However, it is strictly limited to one person at your bedside, except during visiting hours.
If you are admitted for an induction of labour (IOL) your two named birth partners can switch places to provide support, but there must only be one birth partner on the ward at any time, except during visiting hours. Once transferred to the birth room, both birth partners can be present.
Your own children are also welcome to visit during the day, between 08:00 and 19:30 and must be supervised by your named support person. Please remember that the ward is a clinical area that can be a hazardous place, especially for young children. No children under the age of 16 are allowed to enter the ward, unless they are your own children.
Other visitors are welcome from 17:00 to 19:30. There is a maximum of two adult visitors at your bed space at any one time (including your named support person / birth partner). Visiting times are strictly adhered to so that other patients have time to rest during the day, and to allow staff to undertake their duties. Please be advised that during your admission there may be times when your healthcare professionals will ask to speak to you in private, away from support persons, birth partners, and visitors.
There may be times when the trust enforces further restricted visiting times to reduce the spread of infections such as the norovirus (winter vomiting bug), and we would ask your visitors to stay away if they have been unwell. People who have suffered from, or have been in contact with, diarrhoea and vomiting in the last 48 hours will not be allowed to visit the ward. People who have tested positive for COVID-19 or have COVID-19 symptoms must not visit the hospital.
Hand-washing facilities are available throughout the ward, including hand gel. Please ensure that you and your visitors are regularly washing hands with soap and water, to prevent the spread of infection.
For infection control reasons, no visitors, including partners, should be sitting or lying on the patients’ beds.
If you require isolation from the main ward due to concerns about the spread of infection, you will be cared for in a side room and clear signs will specify instructions to your visitors. For all infection control measures, the signs are generic and do not identify the infection in order to maintain confidentiality.
All medication should be taken at the time it is brought to you, and legally each administration of medication has to be recorded in your notes. You may be able to self-administer your medication. Please speak to a member of staff about this. If you are taking your own medication please make your midwife aware of this.
Car parking discounts
Ward staff cannot deal with any car parking discount enquiries or advise on charges. To obtain full information on your entitlement to receive discounted car parking, please go to the customer service desks in either car park 1 or 2, where the staff there will be happy to help you. The customer service desks are open 24/7.
Safety and security
The main doors to the ward are locked at all times. Staff access the ward by using their ID badges. Patients and visitors are asked to ring the doorbell, and this is answered as promptly as possible. Prior to entering the ward everyone will be asked to identify themselves and visitors will need to identify who they are visiting. This information is required to preserve the safety of those on the ward.
You should be given an ID band on admission; please do not remove this until you have been discharged. Your band will need to be scanned and checked when drugs are administered and tests are performed.
For your safety and the safety of patients in your bay, we ask that curtains remain open unless you require privacy during a procedure or undressing. This allows staff to have a clear view of all the patients on the ward.
Information about you is kept confidential. If you wish to speak with the midwife privately, please make a member of staff aware as we have a private room available for such circumstances.
We are not able to give out information to your relatives over the phone.
We are interested in hearing about your maternity experience. Please scan the QR code below with your smart mobile phone to launch four maternity surveys; antenatal, birth, postnatal and postnatal community. You can choose which surveys you want to complete to share your maternity experience. There is also an iPad available on the ward where you can complete this survey.
Alternatively, you can provide your feedback via the Rosie website.
You can also provide feedback to our Rosie Maternity and Neonatal Voices group, visit their website (opens in a new tab) for more information and to complete their survey.
If you have any complaints or concerns, please try to discuss these with a staff member during your admission so that we can address this in a timely way. Alternatively you can contact the Patient Advice and Liaison Service (PALS):
Telephone: 01223 216756
Cambridge University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust