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Worried About Your Pregnancy?

Whilst the majority of pregnancies will progress without complications, many women experience problems which they feel they would like support or further information for.

If you develop worrying symptoms during pregnancy, there are several places that you can turn to for advice:


  • Your general practitioner (GP)

Your GP can be accessed for a range of non-urgent services. If you have a non-urgent concern not related to your pregnancy (chest/urine/ear infections, skin complaints etc,) you should see your GP for advice as they are better placed to help with these problems.  If you are unable to book an appointment, or need to see a GP out of hours, call your surgery and follow the advice provided. You may also consider visiting a walk in centre if your GP is closed, or you cannot get an appointment.


  • Walk-in Centres

Walk-in centres can be accessed by anyone and have more flexible opening hours. You can visit a walk in centre for any general illness or concern for which you may have visited your GP. You can find your nearest walk in centre at www.nhs.uk. Here are a few walk in centres in the Manchester area:

  • Manchester Royal Infirmary (Urgent Primary Care Centre) Oxford Road, Manchester
    M13 9WL Monday to Friday: 8.30 am-10.00 pm Saturday, Sunday and Bank Holidays: 10.00 am -10.00 pm.
  • City Health Centre, 2nd Floor, Boots, 32 Market Street, Manchester, M1 1PL
    Open seven days a week: 8.00 am-8.00 pm.
  • Hawthorn Medical Centre, Unit K, Fallowfield Retail Park, Birchfields Road
    Manchester, M14 6FS.  Monday - Friday 8.30 am-10.30 am, 1.00 pm-3.00 pm, 4.30 pm-6.00 pm; Saturday and Sunday 10.00 am-12.00 pm, 2.00 pm-4.00 pm.
  • Salford NHS Walk-in Centre, Rear of Pendleton House, Off Broughton Road , Salford
    M6 6LS . Monday-Friday, 11.00 am-6.00 pm; Saturday and Sunday 10.00 am- 5.00 pm.
  • Trafford Walk-in Centre, Trafford General Hospital, Moorside Rd, Urmston, M41 5SL. Seven days a week: 8.00 am-8.00 pm.

  • Accident and Emergency Department

Your local Accident and Emergency department can still be used if you have an emergency or accident notrelated to your pregnancy (chest pain, difficulty breathing, collapse, etc). Always inform the staff in the department you are pregnant. If your condition may affect your pregnancy, you will be referred to Triage for assessment.

Make sure you have your green handheld pregnancy notes with you at all times.


  • Your Community Midwife

Your community midwife can be contacted using the details given at booking. Usually these are written on the front of your handheld notes.


  • Emergency Gynaecology Unit (if you are less than 20 weeks pregnant)

If you are less than 20 weeks pregnant, the Emergency Gynaecology Unit can be contacted on (0161) 276 6204, 24 hours a day.


  • Obstetric Triage at Saint Mary's Hospital (if more than 20 weeks pregnant)

If you are more than 20 weeks pregnant contact the Obstetric Triage Department on (0161) 276 6567.

Please have your pregnancy notes to hand when you call, as we make ask you to provide information from them.



About Obstetric Triage

Obstetric Triage is an emergency service.

Accessing the most appropriate service helps to prevent unnecessary delays for those needing to attend  Obstetric Triage. Please consider using some of the other services listed above if you have a problem that is not related to your pregnancy.

Saint Mary's Obstetric Triage Unit provides a 24 hours a day, 7 days a week emergency assessment service from 20 weeks of pregnancy, up to 28 days following the birth of your baby. Triage works in a similar way to an Accident and Emergency (A&E) department, and, like A&E departments can be an over-used resource. This can cause unnecessary waiting times and delays in providing the right kind of care.


Always call Triage before coming so that the midwife can advise you whether or not you need to attend.

(0161) 276 6567

Remember to consider how you will get to the hospital, if required, during your pregnancy. Ambulances for emergencies only. If you call an ambulance, you may be taken to the nearest hospital, even if you are booked at Saint Mary's.


When to contact Triage

The Obstetric Triage department sees pregnant women from 20 weeks of pregnancy onwards. Before 20 weeks, you should contact the Emergency Gynaecology Unit on (0161) 276 6204 for advice.


Some of the reasons to contact Triage:

  • If you think you are in labour (either premature labour, or at the end of your pregnancy).  Labour is different for every woman, but commonly starts, with  your waters breaking or contractions. If you think you are going into labour before 37 weeks of pregnancy you should call Triage immediately for advice. Your community midwife will discuss signs of labour/when to call Triage towards your due date.
  • If you think your waters have broken. Waters breaking (or membrane rupture) is common during, or just before labour. Most women find it obvious that waters have broken, whilst others are less sure. If you are unsure if your waters have broken, place a maternity pad in your underwear to monitor any fluid leaking and contact Triage for advice.

Please note: If your midwife has informed you that you are suitable for Midwifery Led Care ('MLC'), you should contact the Midwifery Led Unit (Ward 47a) directly on (0161) 701 0018(0161) 701 0018 , if your waters break or you think you are in labour after 37 weeks.

  • Severe abdominal pain (not relieved with Paracetamol).
  • Vaginal Bleeding. If you notice any vaginal bleeding you should contact Triage immediately for advice. Sometimes towards the end of pregnancy, you may have a 'show'. A show is usually a mucosy, sticky, blood stained vaginal loss. A show is the mucous 'plug' in front of your baby, which comes away towards the end of pregnancy. A show is normal, and may occur days or weeks before you go into labour. If you are unsure, please contact Triage.

Note: If you know your blood group is Rhesus negative, please inform us when you telephone if you have vaginal bleeding or a bump to your abdomen, as you will require an Anti-D injection.


The following concerns can be seen in your nearest Antenatal Assessment Unit during weekdays and Triage out-of-hours:

  • Reduced baby movements.
  • Itching (not accompanied by a rash).
  • Headaches (not relieved with Paracetamol) and/or visual disturbances.


  • Reduced movements

The importance of monitoring your baby's movements and becoming familiar with your baby's patterns of movements will have been highlighted during your pregnancy.

Don't ignore any reduction in the amount you feel your baby move. It may be an important sign that there is a problem.

If you are unsure if you baby is moving around as much as normal, try lying on your left side, and spending an hour or two monitoring movements. If you don't feel movements, or you still feel movements are  reduced, contact one of the following numbers for advice:


Antenatal Assessment Units:

Saint Mary's Antenatal Assessment Unit - (0161) 276 6404, Monday to Friday, 8.30 am-6.00 pm.

Salford Antenatal Assessment Unit - (0161) 206 5291, Monday to Friday, 8.00 am-5.00 pm.


Outside of these hours, contact Triage at Saint Mary's (0161) 276 6567.


Postnatal Issues

After the birth of your baby: Your community midwife will visit you in the immediate postnatal period. Out of hours if you experience any excessively heavy bleeding, feverishness/very high temperature, problems related to healing stitches or Caesarean section scars, or other urgent concerns, please contact Triage for advice.

Community Midwives can be contacted for advice on non-urgent postnatal issues on: (0161) 276 6246.


Visiting Triage

Always try to bring your hand held pregnancy notes to Triage when you attend. This will provide us with important information about your pregnancy so far.

We aim to see you within 15 minutes of arrival. Initially you will be assessed by a midwife in a Triage room. A full set of observations (including blood pressure, pulse and temperature) will be taken, and you will be asked to provide a urine sample. You can then provide a little more detail about your concern.

Based on the information you provide, the midwife will allocate a 'priority', so you have an idea how quickly you can expect a midwife or doctor to provide further care.

Triaging in this way ensure women are treated in order of clinical need, rather than time of arrival.

Triage prioritisation


Waiting Times

During busy periods, waiting times may be increased. Some of the reasons for delay may be due to staffing levels, availability of rooms on Triage, or availability of doctors.

It is difficult to predict waiting times, and we understand that waiting can be frustrating.

We appreciate visiting Triage may be a stressful time for you and your family, and we do our best to keep waiting times to a minimum.

We recommend you bring a drink and some light refreshments in case of any delays. Staff can advise you of the nearest place to buy food and drinks, and fresh water is available in the waiting area.


Please note: If you experience any changes in your condition whilst awaiting review after being  triaged, please inform a member of staff.

This next section gives advice on what to do if you experience the following symptoms in pregnancy: (Please click on the questions)

Whilst it's normal to have slight contractions through pregnancy (this is when you feel your stomach contracting and relaxing), if you experience a sudden pain that won't go away, contact the hospital on (0161) 276 6567.

Whilst bleeding in pregnancy can be normal, it can also be a sign that something is wrong, especially if it is accompanied by pain. Bleeding at five months could mean that that the placenta has implanted at the lower part of the womb and this can be dangerous for you and your baby. Contact your GP straight away or Triage on (0161) 276 6567 at Saint Mary's Hospital if you are at all concerned.

Any sudden 'acute' illnesses should be referred immediately to your GP or midwife.

This may indicate increased blood pressure, which is dangerous in pregnancy. Contact us on (0161) 276 6567 if you are at all concerned.

This could be a sign of infection which would need treatment. Drink plenty of fluids and contact your GP within 24 hours.

If at any time you feel your baby is moving around less frequently or slowing down contact us on (0161) 276 6567.

Itching is common in pregnancy, but severe itching without a rash (particularly in the last four months of pregnancy) can be a sign of a potentially dangerous liver disorder. Contact us on (0161) 276 6567 if you are at all concerned.

This is normally common but any sudden changes should be reported to your GP or midwife as it could be a sign of pre-eclampsia (high blood pressure and fluid retention in pregnancy).

A discharge that is smelly or blood-stained may point to infection and should be referred to your midwife or GP.