Women and birthing people suffering from arthritis and other similar conditions are being offered extra screening and more advice for a safer pregnancy.
Pregnant women and birthing people, or those looking to get pregnant, are screened for conditions related to inflammatory arthritis.
People with inflammatory arthritis are more likely to have complications during birth, so there is closer monitoring of the baby and people are advised on a range of topics including the impact of different drugs on their developing baby, breastfeeding, vaccinations and change of lifestyle.
Since it began in December at Mid and South Essex NHS Foundation Trust, Dr Marwa Mohareb, Rheumatology Specialist, and her team have helped over 20 patients. One of those to benefit from the new clinic is Myrnese Williams, from Basildon.
She said: “I get to contact and see my doctor a lot more than usual and get frequent tests. If I don’t understand anything, it gets explained to me in greater detail.
“The extra support has been amazing, it’s really nice to get this kind of one-to-one care, especially during pregnancy.”
Dr Anurag Bharadwaj, Clinical Director of Medical Specialties, who launched the clinic, said “This initiative supports, comforts and provides reassurance not only to the patients, but also to their families. My sincere thanks to the dedicated clinical teams involved, who are working closely with both the maternity and renal departments for the best outcome.”
The clinic is based at Basildon Hospital but is open to all patients across the Trust who need to use the service.