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Friday, Oct 30, 2020

Kate surprises new parents during video-call to London hospital

A new mum and dad received an unexpected surprise when the Duchess of Cambridge paid them a virtual bedside visit.
Kate said hello during a video call to midwives she had worked with at Kingston Hospital last year.

She chatted to Rebecca Attwood and John Gill with their baby Max nearby, and when she was told the infant had been born the night before, the royal said: ‘My goodness, you must be exhausted.’

She added Max was ‘so sweet’ before congratulating the new mum and dad.

Midwives told the duchess the coronavirus outbreak had left some mothers suffering from anxiety, concerned about catching Covid-19.

During another video call with experts from the sector, the duchess raised concerns about new parents, saying they should ‘reach out and ask for help’ if they need it.

The call was made on April 22 to staff at the maternity unit of Kingston Hospital in south-west London, where she spent two days on a work placement last November.

During her video chat from her Anmer Hall home in Norfolk, Kate spoke to midwives she had met before, and their colleagues, about how the experiences of expectant mothers and new parents have changed because of the coronavirus pandemic.

To maintain social distancing, three pairs of midwives took it in turns to join the chat, while another was filmed putting on personal protective equipment (PPE) before taking the laptop in to introduce the duchess to baby Max and his parents.

Ahead of Maternal Mental Health Awareness Week which begins on Monday, Kate spoke to a group of experts last week, including Dr Alain Gregoire, chairman of the Maternal Mental Health Alliance, and Dr Edward Morris, president of the Royal College of Obstetrics and Gynaecology.

The duchess, who has spent much of her public work highlighting the importance of the early years development of children and parental wellbeing, said to the group: ‘Parents do need to go out and reach out to those who can support them, particularly those who can provide knowledgeable resource as well.

‘It’s important to access and reach out for help when you do need it.’
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