Cayman Health takes a look at the islands’ maternity facilities, including the amenities and what parents-to-be can expect for the arrival of their new-born members of the family.

Cayman Islands Hospital Maternity Ward, Health Services Authority

Location:

95 Hospital Road, George Town
t: 244-2841/2842

Rooms:

Five double and three single rooms, plus three labour/delivery rooms. All rooms have ensuite bathroom facilities and are connected via nurse call system.

Birthing partners:

During active labour, birthing partners are permitted to be with the mother. This includes overnight visits. There are no overnight visitors allowed outside of these circumstances.

Neonatal intensive care unit:

The neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) is well equipped to care for up to six newborns who may be premature or may need special observation or intensive care.

There is also a nursery for assessment of well babies and special teaching sessions for parents. Healthy newborns usually stay with their mothers in their rooms.

As per restrictions current in July 2021, due to COVID-19, only one set of parents is allowed in the NICU at designated times.

Visitors & siblings:

In line with international guidance, the maternity unit has limited visitation to one designated visitor or birthing partner per day. No siblings or visitors under 18-years-old are permitted.

Visiting hours:

Regular visiting hours are from 11am to 8pm daily. Due to COVID-19, only one approved visitor, per day is allowed to visit a patient. If you need to reach a patient, call 949-8600.

Maternity care:

HSA emphasises the team approach to maternity care with the midwife having the central role in normal births, while an obstetrician is available 24 hours a day. HSA staff consists of a well-qualified and experienced team of midwives, obstetricians, paediatricians, anaesthetists, neonatal nurses, nursing assistants and ancillary support staff. Other specialists are also available for consultation when needed.

Midwifes offer professional care ranging from antenatal preparation and advice to safe delivery and follow-up care after birth. The extensive knowledge and experience of the birthing process enables their midwives to deal with high-risk cases and emergency situations.

Private obstetricians and paediatricians also use HSA facilities to care for their clients.

The maternity unit offers facilities for both low-risk and high-risk mothers and babies. These services are comprised of antepartum care (before birth), labour and delivery, post-partum (after birth) and neonatal care, including normal births, twin births, breech, vacuum, forceps and caesarean section deliveries.

Breastfeeding:

The HSA promotes and supports breastfeeding. Their ‘rooming in’ practice is conducive to breastfeeding, and maternity staff will assist mothers in breastfeeding their babies. On discharge, the Breastfeeding Support Group and the community midwives will continue to give support for breastfeeding. If you do not plan to breastfeed, you will be advised and assisted with alternative methods of feeding.

Other maternity services include:

  • Prenatal counselling, whether a high- or low-risk patient.
  • Antenatal care, available through women’s health services. These clinics consist of combined care between the obstetrician and midwives. Patients are encouraged to start attending clinics from 12 weeks of pregnancy.
  • Classes for expectant parents – a free eight-week educational series called Parent Craft. Classes are held on Monday evenings 5.30pm-7.30pm at the Women’s Health Centre located at the Cayman Islands Hospital. There is no charge or need to register in advance.

Parent Craft topics

• Nutrition for pregnancy
• Labour and delivery
• Knowing your baby
• Breastfeeding
• Infant CPR
• Alternative methods of delivery and immediate postnatal care
• Postnatal care at home, safety, immunisation & family planning
• Relaxation in pregnancy
• Motor development in the first 12 months
• Tour of the maternity ward
• Genetic screening

Changes due to COVID-19

As well as current visitation changes, visitors to the HSA and maternity ward must always wear masks. The mother is required to wear a mask as much as possible, however, will not be asked to wear one during labour.

All mothers-to-be will be tested for COVID-19 and have their result prior to arrival at the hospital for planned caesarean sections and inductions. Women who arrive in labour will be tested on arrival. All medical staff are routinely tested.

Due to the evolving nature of the pandemic, the information provided is subject to change. Visit hsa.ky or call the maternity unit on 244-2841/2842 to for the latest information.

I would certainly recommend the Cayman Islands Hospital to other expectant mothers. The maternity team is excellent. They operate with great sensitivity in consideration of you, your baby and family and communicate regularly in all stages of your stay.

– Anne-Marie Gray-Diaz

Cayman Brac birthing room, Health Services Authority:

Location:

Faith Hospital in-patient unit
t: 948-2243 ext 7625

Rooms:

Faith Hospital has a birthing room with one bed, and a room on the inpatient unit with two beds. This room is used for maternity and paediatric patients. There is no NICU.

Visiting hours:

11am to 8pm

Doctors Hospital Maternity Unit

Location:

16 Middle Road, George Town
t: 949-6066, ext 6400/6460

Rooms:

Four private maternity suites. Doctors Hospital is the only facility offering private maternity suites in the Cayman Islands.

Birthing partners:

Doctors Hospital welcomes a spouse or support person to accompany the expectant mother, be present during labour and delivery, and stay with mother and baby in one of its private maternity suites.

Neonatal intensive care unit (NICU):

No NICU. Should complications arise in pregnancy, during delivery, or with a newborn, Doctors Hospital physicians and nurses are well prepared to care for mother and baby by swiftly and safely transferring them to the HSA neonatal unit (immediately next door to Doctors Hospital) to continue their care.

Visiting hours:

Visiting hours are 11am to 7pm.
Due to COVID-19 protocols, visitor numbers are limited.

Maternity care:

Support and respect for patients’ preferred method of childbirth is a vital component of the Doctors Hospital maternity programme.

The highly personalised approach respects the mother’s dignity, privacy and confidentiality, always allowing them to exercise their right to make choices regarding their pregnancy and childbirth. Equality and freedom from discrimination are fundamental human rights and principles that are practiced without exception at the facility.

Doctors Hospital is committed to delivering leading medical care guided by evidence-based clinical pathways at the highest international standards. The experienced team receives ongoing education and has extensive training in high-risk situations.

Whether patients utilise Doctors Hospital’s obstetricians and paediatricians – or a healthcare provider from another facility – they ensure a smooth and seamless transition across providers and services, from prenatal care to their complete recovery and transition back home.

Breastfeeding:

One-on-one support with the midwife before discharge. Patients needing more support are referred to the Breastfeeding Support Group.

Other maternity services include:

• Antenatal classes
• Feeding support
• Postpartum care
• Educational materials

The Doctors Hospital team was absolutely amazing during the birth of our third child. Every nurse, midwife, physician, and staff member did their part to ensure the delivery (and recovery) was safe, easy and as comfortable as possible.

– Kate (patient and mother)