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Oxford University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust
Women's Services

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Horton Midwifery-led Unit

Horton Midwifery-led Unit in Banbury offers the reassurance of support during normal labour and birth as well as a homely, comforting experience.

A bed with red cover and side table

The Horton Midwifery-led Unit offers of range of services to local women and their families and is available to all low-risk women.

This includes first-time mothers and those having second, third or fourth babies, who:

  • have had an uncomplicated pregnancy
  • are 37-42 weeks gestation
  • are expecting a natural birth.

Evidence shows that birth in a midwifery-led unit is safe and suitable for low-risk women, and the rate of intervention is lower compared with an obstetric unit.

Women requiring obstetric care are transferred to the Women's Centre at the John Radcliffe Hospital.

The Horton MLU is staffed 24/7 by at least one midwife and one maternity support worker. We have the facilities to care for more than one woman in labour at a time, as on-call midwives are available.

Midwives and maternity support workers provide immediate postnatal care to families, who can expect to go home within 4-6 hours after the birth.

Antenatal services

Banbury Community Midwives

Banbury Community Midwives provide antenatal care at local GP surgeries, the Horton Antenatal Clinic or on the Midwifery-led Unit. They also support home births and births in the Midwifery-led Unit, so your community midwife may care for you during labour and/or be present for the birth.

The day after a home birth, or a discharge from the midwifery-led unit or hospital, a midwife or maternity support worker will visit the family at home.

Following the initial visit, further routine check-ups are arranged for around day 5-8 and around day 10 after the birth - additional appointments may be required. Appointments may be at home, in drop-in clinics or at the midwifery-led unit; we arrange this with the family.

Midwife Assessment Clinic (MAC)

  • Opening Monday to Friday 8.00am - 4.00pm
  • Tel: 01295 229779

The Midwife Assessment Clinic is staffed by a midwife and maternity support worker. Appointments are available for women over 16 weeks' pregnant with concerns or questions about their own or their baby's wellbeing.

If obstetric care, or a doctor's review is required, we may advise that the woman is seen at the John Radcliffe Hospital Maternity Assessment Unit (MAU) in Oxford.

Antenatal Clinic

Consultant-led antenatal clinics are run from the Horton on Wednesday and Friday mornings.

Your GP or community midwife may recommend an appointment with one of our obstetric consultants. Even if you are planning to have your baby at the John Radcliffe Hospital we can still see you at the Horton Antenatal Clinic unless specialist care is required, for example through the Maternal or Fetal Medicine Unit in Oxford or Silver Star.

Your midwife or GP may offer you an appointment at other Horton clinics:

  • Lifestyle Clinic
  • Anaesthetic Clinic
  • Smoking Cessation Clinic
  • Perinatal Mental Health Clinic.

We may offer you an appointment to see one of our consultant midwives (e.g. for Birth After Caesarean (BAC) or Mode of Birth).

Ultrasound

Scans provided at the Horton Midwifery-led Unit include:

  • routine nuchal / dating scans
  • fetal anatomy scans
  • 36 week growth scans.

Other scans may be recommended depending on individual circumstances.

Midwifery-led Unit

A water bath with attractive tiles and mood lightingThe Midwifery-led Unit has six rooms, one with a birthing pool.

Coping strategies for labour and birth include:

  • massage and aromatherapy
  • TENS machines (available to hire through the Banbury Community Midwives)
  • Entonox ('gas and air')
  • Meptid (morphine-based injection).

Equipment available includes:

  • birthing balls and mats
  • bean bags
  • birthing stools
  • lamps for mood lighting
  • sound systems.

For further information, please contact the Midwifery-led Unit on the number below.

Tel: 01295 229459

Postnatal services

Breastfeeding

Breastfeeding support is offered by midwives, maternity support workers and breastfeeding support workers and is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week at the midwifery-led unit.

We will see you either at home or at the Horton, or we may offer you an appointment at the Breastfeeding Clinic.

Newborn Hearing Screening

Newborn Hearing Screening is provided at the Horton by one of our Hearing Screeners. We try to schedule this to tie in with other postnatal appointments, for your convenience.

Paediatric Clinic

Monday to Friday

Neonatal doctors review babies who require initial checks (NIPE), those with acute jaundice or requiring prolonged jaundice screen, those with feeding issues who have already had input from the infant feeding team, or any other babies about whom there are concerns, but who are not acutely unwell.

Find us and contact us

Horton Midwifery-led Unit
Horton General Hospital
Oxford Road
Banbury OX16 9AL

If you have any questions, or would like more information, please call us.