A message from Dr. Unjali Malhotra, FNHA Office of the Chief Medical Officer
Amidst the many organizations and service shut-downs that occurred through the COVID-19 pandemic, a very important and long-awaited service opened to support maternal child health and wellness in rural and remote communities in British Columbia (BC).
MaBAL, a Maternity and Babies Advice Line, was created to provide support to health care providers who are supporting pregnant and new parents, guardians and caregivers. The service is available to providers 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. Phone or Zoom calls are answered by midwives and family doctor obstetricians experienced in providing culturally safe care and serving rural and remote communities.
The MaBAL Team can provide guidance on urgent and non-urgent questions related to any aspect of reproductive and sexual health, pregnancy, birth, postpartum wellness and caring for an infant, including: contraception, sexually transmitted infections, infant feeding, bleeding, cramping, options for termination, complications and depression. They can also provide assistance in assessment and problem-solving – and can facilitate quick access to specialists if necessary.
To access MaBAL you should first consult with a health care provider such as a community health nurse, midwife or doula or call the First Nations Virtual Doctor of the Day Service. This person can then provide support for any follow-up care that might be necessary. For more information about MaBAL, visit our website.
Health care professionals: Access MaBAL by signing up for a Zoom account with the Rural Coordination Centre of BC (RCCbc). With a Zoom account through RCCbc, MaBAL will be automatically included in your contact list. If your Zoom account was provided by your health authority or you signed up for your own account (outside of RCCbc), you will need to add the contacts manually.
To sign up for a Zoom account with RCCbc, and for more information and instructions on accessing MaBAL, please go to https://rccbc.ca/rtvs/rtvs-pathways/mabal/.