© 2015 by Warren Kennedy

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Obstetrics

 

ANTENATAL VISITS

 

Your first antenatal visit is ideally when you are 8-10 weeks into your pregnancy.  This allows sufficient time for us to organise any antenatal screening that may be necessary.

 

After your first visit, appointments will occur every 4 weeks until 28 weeks, every 2 weeks until 36 weeks and then weekly until delivery.  These visits not only allow me to monitor the progress of your pregnancy, but also present the opportunity for you to ask any questions that you may have.

 

If you have a low risk pregnancy then there will be the opportunity to take part in a share care arrangement with the midwives at either Calvary Hospital (CATC – Calvary Antenatal Team Care) or the Hobart Private Hospital (KYM – Know Your Midwife).

 

CONTACT

 

If you have any pregnancy related problems or concerns during office hours, please feel free to contact the surgery.  Early in pregnancy the best place to ring is my rooms. My reception staff or pratice nurse will discuss with me the problem and we will then advise you as to how to proceed. Later in the pregnancy, in the majority of cases, the best place to ring is the maternity unit of the hospital that you are planning to deliver at. If you have vaginal bleeding, think you may have broken your waters, have reduced movements of the baby - any issue - ring the maternity unit at your nominated hospital. In the majority of cases the midwife will ask you to attend the hospital and they will assess you. They will then contact me. A lot of the time a plan can be made for your care over the phone. However, if the situation is any more than very simple and straight forward, I will come in and see you as well. REMEMBER - if you are concerned at all, even if you don't know why you are concerned - ring the maternity unit immediately and discuss your concerns with them.

 

The contact numbers for the maternity units are as follows.....

 

Hobart Private Hospital - 6214 3383

Calvary Hospital            - 6278 5326

 

I have a Facebook page (www.facebook.com/DrWarrenKennedy) on which I post. There is some limited information about the practice on that page. Most of the posts are humorous and related to womens health, parenting and kids. Some are more informative "serious" posts.

 

The rooms has a website - www.hobartwomensspecialists.com.au - on which there is information about myself and the other specialists who practice at the rooms.

 

I have an eNewsletter which you can subscribe to by using the form at the bottom of the page.  

 

ANTENATAL CLASSES

 

If this is your first pregnancy you might like to participate in childbirth preparation classes.  These are usually held in the last 3 months of your pregnancy.  Your best point of contact is the Maternity Unit at your nominated hospital. I strongly recommend these classes for first time Mums AND their partners.

 

For husbands I also strongly recommend Beer and Bubs - an informal one-night session at a pub where expectant Dads learn how to support their partner during pregnancy, childbirth and beyond

 

PELVIC FLOOR PHYSIOTHERAPY

 

I recommend that you see a pelvic floor physiotherapist at least once, 6 weeks after the birth of your baby. I recommend Jane Barker and colleagues.

 

Regardless of which way your baby is born - cesarean section, normal vaginal delivery, Ventouse (suction cup on the baby's head) or forceps - your baby has been pushing down on your pelvic floor for the last 9 months.

 

It has been shown that pelvic floor rehabilitation, particularly when started soon after birth, decreases your chances of long term bowel and bladder problems as a result of your pregnancy.

 

There is also evidence that commencing work with a pelvic floor physiotherapist antenatally (before the birth) may be of additional benefit.

 

LABOUR

 

At the onset of labour, please contact the Maternity Unit at Calvary Hospital (62785326) or the Hobart Private Hospital (6214 3383).  The midwives there will advise you on when you need to come into the hospital.  They will also contact me after your arrival.

 

My aim is to be available as often as possible.  I try to deliver as many of my patients as possible. However, if I delivered all of my obstetric patients I would have to be on call 24/7, 52 weeks a year. I would likely be divorced, my kids would hate me and you wouldn't like me much either - I would be quite grumpy. When I take time off  cover is generally provided by an on call roster which I share with Dr Lisa Turner, Dr Steve Sonneveld and Dr David Gartlan.

 

If you present to the labour ward in normal labour then you will probably not see a lot of me on that day, The two people that you will see the most of on that day are the midwife who is caring for you and your partner. If you see a lot of me on that day then that often means that things aren't going to plan. I'll be there at the delivery, more often than not cheering you on, ready to jump in if a problem arises - if you need a cesarean, if you need some help at the very end, if your baby needs to come out in a hurry, or if there is excessive bleeding etc. You could think of your obstetrician as your insurance policy sitting in the corner.

 

FEES

 

There is a fee for each of your antenatal visits to my rooms.

 

A planning and management of pregnancy fee is included in the Medicare schedule for a pregnancy that has progressed beyond 20 weeks. This separate fee is an out of pocket amount for providing care throughout the whole pregnancy by a specialist obstetrician. I charge this fee between 24 and 28 weeks. An invoice is mailed out. The bulk of this charge goes towards the cost of medicolegal insurance and also providing the 24 hour on-call specialist care that is provided to you between your first visit and the delivery of your baby.

 

There is no fee when you see the midwives at the hospitals. 

 

For the overwhelming majority of private health funds there is a “No Gap” fee for the delivery of your baby. However, the reimbursement for a small number of funds does not cover the costs involved and a surcharge may be billed. Contact the reception staff to enquire regarding this. Also, please be aware that if you require an anaesthetist and/or paediatrician there will be separate charges from these specialists for their services and this would involve further out of pocket costs.

 

Ultrasound and pathology tests are also charged separately and these accounts will be billed directly to you at the time of service by other providers.

 

I would advise that you contact your private health fund to ensure that your level of cover is adequate for your hospital stay and any associated costs.

 

If you have any questions regarding your pregnancy or the information contained in this section, please do not hesitate to contact the surgery during office hours.