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Women's and Neonatal Services

Maternity Service

Post-Natal Services

West Hertfordshire Maternity Services offers post-natal in-patient services based in Watford Hospital.

Our range of services includes:

  • Katherine Ward
  • Transitional Care
  • Maternity ‘Amenity’ Rooms at Watford General

Our postnatal team are committed to multi-disciplinary approach to ensure families receive the highest standards of care and support after the birth of your baby, regardless of where you access our services.

Your postnatal care will be provided by Watford Maternity Unit NHS midwives; maternity care assistants and nursery nurses. The midwives and maternity assistants will provide you with postnatal care dependent upon the type of birth you have had, as well as you and your baby’s individual needs. If you have had a caesarean section, your recovery may take a little longer. Breastfeeding is encouraged and your choice of feeding your baby will be supported. We aim to fully involve in every aspect of caring for your baby and national guidance recommends that well babies are not separated from their mothers at any time unless medically indicated. Your baby will remain with you in your room at all times, whether you are on four bedded bay or in a single room.

Postnatal visiting arrangements

Please note the visiting arrangements are the same for ALL postnatal areas:

NO children under the age of 14 unless they are the woman’s/partner’s own children. ONLY 2 visitors by the bedside at any one time.

How long will I be in hospital after I have had my baby?

This will be based on you and your baby’s individual, clinical needs, however as a guide: For women who have had a normal, vaginal birth you can expect to be in hospital for 6 – 24 hours. For women who have had an instrumental delivery, 24 – 48 hours For women who have had a caesarean section, you can expect to be in hospital for 24 – 72 hours.

Your Baby

All babies will receive a full examination in the first few days following delivery by either a paediatrician or an appropriately trained midwife. During this examination, you will have the opportunity to discuss your baby’s health and future development. In addition, all babies will receive a hearing screening test in the room shortly after delivery.

While you are in hospital

We will give you information to enable you to look after yourself and more importantly how to recognise and respond to problems and when to seek further assistance. You will also be offered information and advice to enable you to: Assess your baby’s general condition Identify signs and symptoms of common health problems Contact a healthcare professional or emergency service

Going Home

We will make arrangements for your community midwife to visit you when you get home from hospital. The midwife should visit you the day after you are discharged home and will plan how often she visits you after this time.

If the community midwife does not visit when expected by 17.00, please contact: Monday – Friday 08.00 – 19.00 – Community Midwives Office on 01923 217361 Saturday/Sunday – Katherine Ward – 01923 217366 If you are concerned that either you or your baby are acutely unwell, please contact the emergency services on 999 Other clinical enquiries, please contact Delivery Suite on 01923 217920

Our range of postnatal services:

Katherine Ward

This is based on the second floor of the maternity unit and consists of 26 beds. Beds are provided in 5 x four bedded bays and 6 side rooms (which are allocated to women or babies with a specific medical need).

Transitional Care

This is also based on the second floor and is a six bedded bay where care is provided jointly by the maternity and neonatal service to women with babies requiring more specialised neonatal care.

Maternity ‘Amenity’ Rooms at Watford General Hospital

The thought of coming into hospital can be a little daunting. We naturally want to make your stay comfortable and are aware that many women would prefer the added comfort and privacy of a single amenity room during their stay.

At Watford General Hospital we have two types of amenity rooms available for women to book. Amenity rooms are available for women who wish to have extra privacy after they have given birth. You will still be treated as an NHS patient but are paying for the privacy of a single room.

  • Side room only, no en-suite facilities - 100
  • Side room with full en-suite facilities - 200

Prices are per night stay and payment can be made by credit/debit card and paid per night on a daily basis. Rooms are subject to availability.


Food is only provided for the woman. If clinical condition worsens the women will be moved out of the amenity room to allow staff to observe the clinical condition more closely. If the amenity room is required for a clinical need of another woman this will take priority. In this instance any advance payment will be refunded. Payment is for the room only and does not constitute private midwifery or medical treatment/care.

How to book

When you are admitted in labour please ask your midwife to check for availability. These rooms are booked on a 'first come first served' basis and rooms are subject to availability.

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