Introduction

  • Introduction

The University is committed to protecting the health of the new or expectant mother. The risks to staff and students must be assessed and reasonably practicable measures to control those risks must be undertaken. A ‘New’ or ‘Expectant Mother’ is an employee or student who is pregnant, or who has given birth within the previous six months, or who is breast feeding.

The first three months of pregnancy is a critical time for the development of the foetus, and several weeks can pass before a pregnancy is confirmed. Certain working conditions and high risk environments have been identified as presenting potential risks to new or expectant mothers and their children. Where this is the case, these risks should be brought to the attention of staff and students and, where applicable, to female visitors to the workplace.

High risk environments include work with *teratogens, mutagens, carcinogens, cytotoxic drugs, steroids, certain biological agents, ionising radiation, and chemicals contra-indicated for pregnancy and/or breast feeding. 

All new and expectant mothers are likely to experience general fatigue and discomfort associated with pregnancy and breast feeding. Risks to be considered in low risk environments include manual handling, use of computer equipment, slips and falls, lone working, stress and personal safety.