Exhibition For Each Section
Obstetric Services

Labour room started with two beds and by the mid 60's was extended to accommodate five beds and new post-natal ward and nursery. Most mothers presented in the later stage of labour in the early days. However, in the 70's, the number antenatal admissions for pregnant mothers at early stage of labour or mother experiencing complications during pregnancy increased. Prior to the 80's, monitoring of fetus was mainly done with fetoscope. Half hourly fetal monitoring was done for high risk patients and fetal distress. The nurses had to listen for at least one minute for a change in fetal heart beat pattern and heart rate. Later in the 80's, the daptone, a small machine for listening to fetal heart was used. Only in the 90's was proper monitoring of fetal heart beat available. For the resuscitation of newborn, the nurses cleared the oral and nasal cavity of the baby by literally sucking through a tube connected to a reservoir immediately after delivery. Not surprisingly, many nurses had unforgettable experiences of tasting or even swallowing the mother's amniotic liquor. Electric suction machine was only introduced in the early 70's. The survival rate of premature babies was poor prior to 1990's. Prior to the purchase of infant incubator in the eighties, premature babies were kept warm through radiant heat from clothes-wrapped plastic bottles filled with hot water.

After delivery, babies were placed in the nursery. Bottle feeding was the practice then. A milk nurse prepared all the required milk for each feeding time. With the emphasis on breastfeeding by the mid 1990's, no milk powder was allowed except for exceptional cases. All the mothers had to room-in with their babies to take care of them to encourage bonding. The practice was to initiate skin contact right after delivery or as soon as possible for cesarean. For normal delivery mothers were kept for observation for 2-3 days in the ward in the past but later they were discharged after 12-24 hours' observation for mothers giving birth to first child and 6-12 hours for other mothers with normal deliveries.