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01 February 2016

St Michael’s Hospital launches new maternity app

Maternity app 1University Hospitals Bristol has recently launched 'My Pregnancy at St Michael's' - an app for women who are booked to have their baby at St Michael's Hospital, or who are researching their birthing options.

The free app, available to download now on Apple and Android devices, is believed to be the first of its kind in England. Unlike commercially available apps, the information is specific to St Michael's. The information on the app comes from more than 60 patient information leaflets, which have been written by experienced doctors and midwives at the hospital.

Previously, each of the 5000 to 5600 women using maternity services has been receiving up to 45 of these leaflets during their pregnancy. Dr Louise Ashelby, obstetric consultant at St Michael's, conducted a survey amongst pregnant women to find out if they would prefer to receive this information differently. "More than 75 per cent of the women we surveyed said they would use an app to access information during pregnancy," says Louise. "It was clear that it's what women want."

The main benefit for women is that the information they need during pregnancy will be more easily accessible. Once the app has been downloaded, the content is stored on their device, and they won't need an internet connection to access it. "The majority of women have their phone on them most of the time, but they won't always carry their leaflets," says Louise. "Now they can access the information they need at any time, wherever they are. The app will also benefit the environment since fewer leaflets will be printed."

For those who don't own a smartphone or tablet, paper leaflets will still be available and can be accessed via a midwife. The app content can also be viewed through the UH Bristol website, where each leaflet can also be downloaded as a PDF.

To download the app, visit the app store on your smartphone or tablet and search for 'St Michael's pregnancy'. The app will be updated regularly, so it is important to ensure that you always have the most recent version on your device.