Maternity Support Services and Groups

​​Read about other maternity services availlable within the CDHB. (Listed alphabetically).

​​​​ON THIS PAGE​​​​​​

Chaplaincy Team

Community Support Groups​​


Lactation Consultants

Maori Health

Maternal Mental Health


Newborn Hearing Screening Programme  

Nutrition Services


Pregnancy and Parenting Education Classes

Smoke free services - Quitting Smoking

Social Work and Counselling

Ultrasound and Antenatal Screening

Well Child / Tamariki-Ora


Chaplaincy Team

A chaplain is available at Christchurch Women's Hospital to respond to women, and their families/whanau. If you are giving birth at another facility you can request to be put in contact with a chaplain through the Charge Midwife Manager.

Community Support Groups​​

Colic Support

Colic is when a baby cries for several hours a day and no other cause for the crying can be found.The cause of colic is unknown.​

Home Birth Aotearoa

Tips to prepare for supporting a homebirth.​

Innov8 smokefree

Free personalised stop smoking service for pregnant women.​

La Leche League

Supporting your breastfeeding journey.​

Miscarriage Support

Offers empathy, emotional and psychological peer support and information for all women who have experienced the loss of their baby, particularly by miscarriage.​

Multiple Birth

Supporting parents of multiples.​

Parents Centres New Zealand Inc

Parents Centres New Zealand opens the door to a wealth of pregnancy, birth and postnatal information and programmes.

Postnatal Depression Support  

After birth, women often experience a range of emotions – from elation and excitement, to times of feeling low, anxious, confused and tearful. These low feelings are called ‘the blues’ or ‘baby blues’ and are common in the first two weeks after your baby’s birth. For some mothers, however, the low feelings last longer and may develop into postnatal depression.​

Pregnancy Help 

Practical support and advice to prepare for parenthood ​

Royal New Zealand Plunket Society Inc

New Zealand's largest provider of support services for the development, health and wellbeing of children under 5. Plunket works together with families and communities, to ensure the best start for every child​


A voluntary, parent-run, non-profit organisation set up to support parents and families who have experienced the death of a baby at any stage during pregnancy, as a baby or infant.​

Women’s Refuge 

New Zealand’s most significant domestic violence organisation.

If you are living in fear in your relationship or in your family, there are many ways we can help you right now.

We warmly welcome all women of New Zealand and their children to our free advice, emergency accommodation and confidential advocacy services provided by women.​

Young Mother Support 

For parenting advice, counselling, financial support, or just getting in touch with other teenage parents, there are organisations and agencies who are there to help. This site provides a list of organisations which have links to local support networks.


An Interpreter Service is available for people who are deaf or for whom English is not their first language. Please talk to your LMC or hospital midwife who can contact the interpreter / translator service.

Canterbury DHB's interpreter service is available 24 hours a day and should be used whenever a lack of ability in the English language could restrict understanding of a patient's needs, rights and obligations.  The translation/interpreter service is provided FREE at no charge to patients and there are a large number of languages available, including NZ sign language.

If you wish to notify the interpreting service of your impending admission to hospital please email the service at or phone 03 364 0669. 

Lactation Consultants

The lactation consultants provide training and advice about lactation to mothers and staff to ensure you receive consistent and appropriate advice about the initiation, establishment and maintenance of breastfeeding.

Rental equipment (such as breast pumps for expressing milk) for breastfeeding women is available through the lactation consultants.

Breastfeeding Advice

Antenatal Breastfeeding courses 2015  

View Christchurch Women's Hospital schedule.​

Maori health

Ministry of Health Breastfeeding

La Leche League

Baby Friendly Initiative

Ten Steps to Successful Breastfeeding

Every facility providing maternity services and care for newborn infants should:

  • Have a written breastfeeding policy that is routinely communicated to all health care staff.

  • Train all health care staff in skills necessary to implement this policy.

  • Inform all pregnant women about the benefits and management of breastfeeding.

  • Help mothers initiate breastfeeding within a half-hour or birth.

  • Show mothers how to breastfeed, and how to maintain lactation even if they should be separated from their infants.

  • Give newborn infants of breastfeeding mothers no food or drink other than breastmilk, unless medically indicated.

  • Practise rooming-in. Allow mothers and infants to remain together 24 hours a day.

  • Encourage 'breastfeeding on demand'.

  • Give no artificial teats or pacifiers (also called dummies or soothers) to a breastfeeding infant.

  • Foster the establishment of breastfeeding support groups and refer mothers to them on discharge from the hospital.

Maori Health

Ngā Ratonga Hauora Māori (The Māori Health Service) is available to help women and whānau through their hospital journey with culturally appropriate advice and support. Specially trained staff provide āwhina/help and tautoko/support with cultural issues, education on tikanga (values and beliefs) and referral to the appropriate resources available in the community for both Māori and mainstream organisations.

The Maori Health Worker, Kaiawhina Whaea me ngā Pēpi is part of the multi-disciplinary team at Christchurch Women's Hospital and is available to all women admitted to hospital, to provide support and education on cultural issues, information sharing and referral.

Find more information at Maori Health Services  and Maori and Pacific Health

Maternal Mental Health

Specialist Service

Maternal mental health in the primary setting is managed by general practitioners. The CDHB specialist mental health service provides a secondary regional service for maternal mental health, which includes the Mother and Baby Unit located at The Princess Margaret Hospital. It is the only inpatient service for the South Island.  Referral to this services is usually by a GP.

If you suffer an acute (emergency) mental health issue, you can be referred by an individual, family member, GP, Obstetrician, lead maternity care midwife or community service to the single point of entry (SPOE) service at Christchurch Public Hospital.

General Advice

Being pregnant and becoming a mother can be an anxious time for some women.  If you have any concerns around your mental health during pregnancy, talk to your LMC or GP for support and advice.         
The following links may also be helpful:

Perinatal Mental Health Resources New Zealand

Mothers Matter


The Neonatal Service provides 24-hour care for newborn babies with a variety of special needs at Christchurch Women's Hospital. This includes prematurity, surgery, congenital abnormalities and babies who may have been compromised at birth.

Care is provided by a skilled and experienced multi-disciplinary team utilising current evidence based practice.

Newborn Hearing Screening Programme  

If your baby has a hearing loss, finding it early will help their language, learning and social development.

The Universal Newborn Hearing Screening Programme aims to identify newborn babies with hearing loss early so they can access appropriate assistance as soon as possible. Screening is usually done before you and your baby go home from the hospital.

Find more information at Newborn Hearing Screening

Nutrition Services

DHB nutrition service is staffed by NZ registered dieticians and is available for women, Monday to Fridays, who are using maternity services. Staff see women as outpatients and inpatients for individualised nutrition assessment and advice. Referrals can be made by your LMC or doctor to discuss any of the following:

  • Early pregnancy nausea and vomiting management

  • Healthy eating for pregnancy

  • Food safety in pregnancy

  • Nutrition for multiple pregnancy

  • Guide to healthy weight gain in pregnancy

  • Diabetes in pregnancy including gestational diabetes

  • Healthy eating for breastfeeding

  • Advice on nutritional supplements in pregnancy and breastfeeding

 Find more information at Nutrition Services

Exercise and healthy Eating in Pregnancy


Physiotherapy staff see women as outpatients and inpatients for individualised advice about looking after your body after childbirth. Referrals can be made by your LMC  or GP to discuss any of the following:

  • Pelvic floor muscle exercises

  • Sitting and standing posture

  • Lifting

  • Separation of abdominal muscle

  • After caesarean section

  • Rest and exercise

Find more information at Women's Health pages at HealthInfo

Looking After Yourself in Pregnancy


Pregnancy and Parenting Education Classes

All maternity facilities within CDHB provide pregnancy and parenting education classes.

These classes comprise six two hour, weekly evening classes or weekend sessions (9.30 – 4pm) on two consecutive Saturdays) and are free of charge.

A two week refresher course is also available for those women who have previously had a baby.

Your birthing partner / support person is welcome to attend these classes with you. It is advised that you book into these classes at around 20 week's gestation.

How to contact:

Phone 364 4699 between Monday to Thursday, 4.00pm – 5.30pm and as to speak to a Parent Educator.

Phone 364 4421 (at any time) and leave a message on the answer service.

Smoke free services - Quitting Smoking

CDHB Smoking Cessation Advice

Face-to-face support is available for pregnant women wanting to quit smoking. Our smoking cessation practitioners provide cessation support, advice and information on nicotine replacement therapies (NRT) that are safe to use during pregnancy.

Tobacco addiction and withdrawal symptoms are explained and support is provided to manage these symptoms and to make informed decisions and choices to become smoke free.

Smoke free cessation advisors provide face to face support onsite and home visits if required.

Appointments and sessions are flexible to suit client need. Appointment times are within normal working hours during the week and can be scheduled as often as required. Support is usually on a one-to-one basis and partners are welcome. Further groups can be facilitated if requested.
Visits are free to the smoke free cessation advisors and NRT is subsidised.

Ask your LMC midwife to refer you for help to quit.

Social Work and Counselling

The Christchurch Women's Hospital social work and counselling services provide support, information, referral to community agencies, assistance with decision making, advocacy and short and long term counselling services for a range of issues. Your LMC midwife can arrange a referral if needed.

Ultrasound and Antenatal Screening

If a woman is identified as having a high risk pregnancy she may require a secondary scan. Your LMC midwife will arrange this through Christchurch Women's Outpatients' Service.

Well Child / Tamariki-Ora

Well Child / Tamariki Ora services are offered free to all New Zealand children from birth to five years. They provide you with the knowledge and skills to respond to your child's needs at the different stages of their development so you can give your child the best start in life to:

  • Provide reassurance that your child is developing normally, through growth and development assessments.

  • Provide you with health education and screening to detecting problems early and supporting you to access the most appropriate care.

  • Support and help you to identify your needs as a parent, and link you with community and other services.

  • From four-to-six weeks to three years, there are a number of Well Child health checks available from your well child provider at important stages in your child's life.

Find more on Well Child at:

Well Child Tamariki-Ora

Ministry of Health Well Child / Tamariki Ora National Schedule 2013

Maternity Services and Support Groups
rounded corners top

Related Documents

rounded corners bottom
Page last reviewed: 10 March 2015