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Are we really still calling having a baby "Confinement"?

(17 Posts)
RNBrie Wed 06-Jan-16 15:52:38

I couldn't remember when I am supposed to get my MatB1 certificate - so I checked the government website - MatB1 Guidance

And apparently I am still expected to be "confined". Is this still really a thing?! Are we still calling it that?!

"Certificates must not be issued more than 20 weeks before the expected week of confinement. You should estimate as accurately as possible the date the woman is expected to be confined"

I know that some Asian cultures practice something similar but the UK generally does not expect or insist that women are confined after childbirth so I am surprised the language has not been updated.

goodnightdarthvader1 Wed 06-Jan-16 15:57:02

I agree, it's an outdated term. Apparently it refers specifically to the act of childbirth, being "confined" at home or at hospital (rather than wandering the streets while in labour, I suppose), but it's unnecessarily reductive.

hellsbells76 Wed 06-Jan-16 16:01:35

I'm a midwife and I wince every time I see that on the MatB1. The government are obviously in no hurry to update any of their maternity forms though: the FW8 (for your free prescriptions) still asks for my UKCC number - midwives haven't been regulated by the UKCC for about 20 years!

RNBrie Wed 06-Jan-16 16:14:51

Hellsbells really?? How hard is it to update the wording on a form? Do you just have to leave that bit blank?

I was mildly offended by the confinement thing. It makes me feel like I'm a baby making vessel that has to be locked away from the sensitive man world. Possibly just feeling a bit hormonal today!

goodnightdarthvader1 Wed 06-Jan-16 16:30:02

How hard is it to update the wording on a form?

Considering these forms and printed in bulk and distributed to thousands of hospitals, community midwifery practices and doctor's surgeries across the country ... it depends on when their next print run is. And whether they'd be accused of "wasting public funds" to get the design agency to change a sentence, recall all existing forms, and redistribute the new version across the country.

TheGreaterGood Wed 06-Jan-16 16:34:26

My MIL referred to 'confinement' when we told her about the pregnancy - I had to look it up. Mind you, she's 83 so can be excused - can't believe it's in official documentation though!

Out2pasture Wed 06-Jan-16 16:37:17

Confinement is at least better known than "parturation". Both are odd words steeped in medical history.

RNBrie Wed 06-Jan-16 16:53:11

Now now goodnight, I don't believe we need a document recall but nor do I believe there hasn't been in print run since 1824 or whenever it was the practice went out of fashion!!

goodnightdarthvader1 Wed 06-Jan-16 17:09:11

What practice? Women are "confined" during labour, in a manner of speaking, just voluntarily. Hence the use of the word.

Also, I didn't say you asked for a recall, but I'm assuming it's not NHS practice (or certainly not GOOD practice) to release 2 versions of one form for medical use.

As I said, I agree, it's a silly term and shouldn't be used, but you have to weigh that up against the cost of reprinting because some stuffy old man in the copywriting dept thought that was an "official" sounding way of putting it.

RNBrie Wed 06-Jan-16 17:19:39

Were women not confined for a period before and after childbirth where they were expected to stay more or less bed ridden? I admit my history on this matter comes mainly from Phillipa Gregory novels and a quick Google - neither I suspect are experts on the matter.

goodnightdarthvader1 Wed 06-Jan-16 17:33:32

TBH I don't know! I suspect so, although I'm not sure if that "lying in" period was thought to be for the mother's good (rather than her "contaminating" other people IYSWIM)

I totally agree it's a very loaded term, despite the literal meaning, and should be scrapped (but not something I'd expect the NHS to do now since they seem to be in dire straits!).

LucyMouse Wed 06-Jan-16 17:48:18

I think it's a DWP term rather than NHS. I agree it's so outdated. Cringe whenever I read it.

KanyesVest Wed 06-Jan-16 17:51:50

One of the maternity hospitals in Dublin until very recently (approx 5yrs) still had "women's and infants' lying-in hospital" in it's official name.

KanyesVest Wed 06-Jan-16 17:52:16

Gah, rogue apostrophe.

spaceyboo Wed 06-Jan-16 17:54:49

They use confinement at work too & so many girls have gotten confused. One even thought it was referring to a fine lol

hellsbells76 Thu 07-Jan-16 08:52:51

I put in my NMC number instead! (The NMC replaced the UKCC in <looks it up> 2002. Sure they've had a print run or two since then...)

toohardtothinkofaname Thu 07-Jan-16 11:06:18

Didn't even notice it. Doesn't even matter

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