As with all aspects of the NHS, a number of changes have been enacted in the operation of maternity services as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. One recent policy which has been implemented by many NHS Trusts is that pregnant women's partners will only be admitted to the labour ward once labour has been “confirmed as established”. To establish this, women may need a vaginal examination.
On a recent Radio 2 episode, Jeremey Vine spoke to women who wanted their partner to be at the birth of their child being forced to have an invasive examination. The women spoke of feeling coerced into a vaginal examination without their consent. They felt that they were not asked and had no choice, which often led to further pain and distress. Milli Hill from the Positive Birth Movement spoke about the concerns she had on this policy.
Radio 2 episode (1h:09m:42s into the episode)