Pregnant people across the City and County are to receive free vitamins as part of a link-up between local hospitals and councils.

Maternity services at Nottingham University and Sherwood Forest Hospitals are working with Nottingham City Council and Nottinghamshire County Council’s Public Health departments on the project, which will run until April 2024.

Council teams have also secured funding to continue to offer free vitamin starter packs to everyone while pregnant for a further two years from April 2024 until March 2026. These are universal offers – available to all, regardless of their eligibility for the Healthy Start Scheme.

In Nottingham and Nottinghamshire, anyone who is pregnant should be offered free vitamins.  All vitamins will be provided by community midwifery teams and offered to pregnant individuals as soon as possible in pregnancy and up until the baby is born.

The packs contain:

  • Folic acid which lowers the chance of babies developing spinal and brain problems;
  • Vitamin C to help tissue repair, wound healing, and support the baby’s bones and teeth to develop, as well as immunity;
  • Vitamin D which helps support babies’ bones to develop properly.

Councillor Linda Woodings, Portfolio Holder for Adult Social Care and Health at Nottingham City Council, said, “Eating a healthy, nutritious diet is really important if you’re pregnant, to provide the right balance of nutrients to support you during pregnancy and help your baby grow and develop properly.

“You may not be getting enough vitamin C, vitamin D or folic acid, so these supplements provide the correct amount of recommended vitamins you and your baby needs.

“It’s really important to take these vitamins to help support you and your baby’s development during pregnancy and beyond”.

Councillor Matt Barney, Cabinet Member for Adult Social Care and Public Health at Nottinghamshire County Council said, “Caring for the health and well-being of our residents is a major priority for Nottinghamshire County Council, and this initiative to provide free pregnancy vitamins is proof of our commitment.

“Ensuring that everyone who is pregnant in Nottingham and Nottinghamshire has access to essential vitamins is not just about supporting physical health; it’s about nurturing our community’s future.

“This universal offer, available to all, reflects our belief in equality and our dedication to providing the best start in life for every child. Together with our partners, we are taking a significant step towards a healthier and stronger community.”

If people have any questions on where to get their free vitamins and how to take them, they should ask their midwife or health visitor.

People may also be able to get free fruit, vegetables, milk while pregnant and until their child is four. Find out if you are eligible by visiting Get help to buy food and milk (Healthy Start)