We’re launching a trial of a new digital support service to support expectant and new parents through the COVID-19 pandemic.
The trial*, in partnership with Peppy and LCGB, is funded through the Techforce19 programme, an NHSX Covid-19 response initiative supported by PUBLIC and the AHSN Network. Pregnant women and their partners, and new parents with a baby under 1 year of age, will be able to access group or one-to-one chat with expert practitioners, plus chat or video support for breastfeeding, sleep and mental wellbeing.
At this stage, the free support is being offered to 1,000 users over an initial two-week period. If the support proves to be effective, there is the potential for much wider national roll out. This pilot project is one of 18 digital services to have been selected by Techforce19 from over 1,600 applicants, and the only one targeted at supporting pregnancy and parenthood.
The new digital support package will help to address the heightened levels of anxiety and isolation for pregnant women and new parents, who were identified as a vulnerable group by the government in March.
We’ve experienced a significant increase in demand for its services and has rapidly adapted to provide online antenatal courses and infant feeding support, as well as regularly updated evidence-based information on COVID-19 on its website.
It is essential that we find new and innovative ways to support women and their young families through this crisis.
Angela McConville, NCT Chief Executive said:
“COVID-19 has turned everyone’s lives upside down and has had a huge impact on pregnant women, their partners and new parents. Becoming a parent can be challenging at the best of times, but the current crisis has led to heightened feelings of anxiety and isolation, and very real concern about the care and support that is available. It is essential that we find new and innovative ways to support women and their young families through this crisis. This funding means that our highly valued information and support will be accessible when and where new parents now need it – in the safety of their homes”.
We’re really excited about the possibilities of this new digital support service and will keep you updated on progress.
* After a phenomenal response, registration has now closed for the trial period.
Peppy provides personalised health support to families going through life’s big transitions, such as becoming a parent, fertility treatment or going through the menopause. The company was founded in 2018 and works with a wide range of employers to provide support to their employees.
LCGB is a registered charity that works to protect and support breastfeeding, in order to improve the health and wellbeing of families across the country through advocacy and by providing expert breastfeeding care. Founded in 1994 to serve as a professional voice for breastfeeding, LCGB also provides advanced education and training for infant feeding specialists. Our members are part of a community of 32,500 International Board Certified Lactation Consultants worldwide, recognised internationally as the gold standard credential in breastfeeding and lactation.