NEW mums separated from their babies immediately after birth are being offered iPads to help them bond with their child.

The neonatal department at Worcestershire Royal Hospital is offering the assistive video link technology to parents so they do not miss out on those precious first moments.

Sharon Ali, neonatal sister, said: “The first mum to use the iPad was in tears when she could see her baby.

"It was very emotional. The staff were all overwhelmed with the reaction.

"This is a brilliant idea for those mums who may be separated from their baby.

“It is a privilege to see that bond developing and we are so grateful to the donation.”

There are currently two iPad carts available within the department, funded by Herefordshire and Worcestershire Local Maternity and Neonatal System.

When a mum is unable to visit her baby, a cart is taken to her bedside where she can monitor the baby video link and talk with staff to receive important updates on the baby’s progress.

The technology is turned off at night to give mother and baby a rest.

Mel Popple, clinical educator, said: “For mothers not well enough to visit their babies this is important to start the bonding process from the word go.

“Going forwards, we could look at a mother going home with their baby still in hospital and interacting with the baby remotely.

“However, this would need careful planning as there are risks, including security issues.”

Babies suffering complications or premature babies are often sent straight to a neonatal unit so they can receive specialist care, meaning that new mums can often spends hours, without being able to hold or bond with their new-born baby.