A Kildare senator has called for an examination of restrictions at maternity hospitals.
Three maternity hospitals in Dublin have varying restrictions in place.
In all three hospitals, partners may visit for a period of time each day and may also be there for the labour and birth.
There are limitations however, on access of partners to maternity wards, theatres and appointments.
These are all decided at local level and are regularly reviewed.
Kildare Fianna Fáil Senator, Fiona O'Loughlin, says "I have been hearing from new mothers and expectant mothers who are extremely upset about the rules around visitors to maternity units. ...While we all understand the need for absolute caution around the health of expectant mothers and newborns, the mental health of mothers must also be considered. Many women find scans very stressful and hard to face without any support. A woman shouldn't have to receive potentially bad news at an antenatal appointment without her partner's presence. I think that the 20 week anomaly scan in particular is an important one for both parents to attend."
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