Keep calm and carry on, as there is never a “good time” to wait to have a baby.
And having one during the Covid-19 pandemic is still as safe as can be.
That is what Dr Janice Tung, consultant obstetrician and gynaecologist at The O&G Specialist Clinic at Thomson Medical Centre (TMC) and Thomson Fertility Centre at Paragon, wants to stress to women thinking of expanding their family but fear conceiving during this time – especially as she is approaching it from both a doctor’s and mother’s point of view.
The 35-year-old delivered her second child on June 4, just days after Singapore’s circuit breaker ended.
Dr Tung, who also has a three-year-old son, told The New Paper: “Keep an open mind and focus on enjoying the whole journey rather than being too worried.
“I believe that the quality of care across all hospitals will be the same and the care we deliver should not change.”
In addition, there have been no cases of pregnant women with Covid-19, mother-to-child transmissions or newborns with Covid-19 at TMC.
Standard safety measures to be expected include temperature taking, contact tracing and SafeEntry check-in, as well as mask-wearing, which is enforced for ob-gyns during the deliveries but is not compulsory for patients who are delivering.
When Covid-19 hit, Dr Tung continued working full-time but without a fixed schedule because of safety measures and crowd control in her clinics.
She was mainly accepting appointments with pregnant women and fertility patients, while cases classified as non-urgent were postponed, thus reducing her workload.
The main inconvenience from Covid-19 was the absence of her husband, Dr Felix Li from Thomson Wellth Medical and Aesthetics Clinic.
He had stayed in a hotel from April 20 to May 25 while volunteering on the front-lines to minimise risks of infecting his family, and in the rare chance that he tested positive for Covid-19, there would be “less impact” on her pregnancy and her work.
Dr Tung said: “That was a slightly challenging period because I was heavily pregnant by then and had to juggle work and my toddler.”
Dr Tung, who was involved in the recent I Love Children’s Know Your Fertility Wellness Campaign webinars, hopes the coronavirus will not disrupt family planning too drastically amid Singapore’s low fertility rate.
She said: “I am in this line of helping couples having difficulty getting pregnant, so I am more forward in pushing for it.
“There are bound to be other forms of national crises and disasters in future, so even if Covid totally goes away, there is always going to be something new. One cannot always be waiting for a good time to have a baby.”