A new private ultrasound baby scanning business has been inundated with bookings following its opening last month.
‘First Glimpse’, based in St Crispins, specialises in 3D, 4D, early pregnancy and gender scans and is the brainchild of best friends Kerri Caroll, 32, from Little Billing and Laura Salmon, 34, from Piddington.
Laura, talking about their experience so far with 4D baby scans, said: “The baby looks as if they are there with us. Depending on the position of the baby, they are giggling, smiling and blowing bubbles.
“We have a tv screen and parents interact with their baby and they get full of emotion. They laugh and cry and it is really nice seeing the parents bonding with them.”
Kerri, formerly a healthcare assistant, added: “I see so much detail and to see how happy the customers are when you point out their little nose forming, you can point out their arm. I just think it’s something everyone really loves, seeing what you can expect your baby to look like.”
The pair become inspired to launch their venture after pregnant friends shared their amazement at their 4D baby scans, which they had to attend out of town. This made Kerri and Laura realise there was a gap in the market.
Laura, formerly a personal assistant, said: “We had a friend tell us how amazing it was and then the pandemic happened and we realised how important it was to people and how much we love it as a job - making people happy and that is what really spurred us on.”
Laura and Kerri began to research what it would take to open their clinic in 2019. Laura’s redundancy coupled with the coronavirus pandemic pushed the duo to get really serious about ‘First Glimpse’, with many partners not being allowed to attend scans or the birth of their child.
By 2020, Laura and Kerri made a business plan, secured a building to operate their clinic from and made a submission to the Care Quality Commission (CQC) to become service providers and registered managers under First Glimpse Ltd.
The CQC, however, was under a lot of pressure during the pandemic and the clinic could not open without their permission.
After a great deal of patience and support from friends and family, Laura and Kerri were eventually granted permission by the CQC to open First Glimpse on May 9, 2022.
Laura said: “It has been very busy and we were incredibly overwhelmed. During the opening week, we were fully booked and we have been booked out ever since. People have loved coming to us and they have been leaving lovely reviews.”
Kerri told the Chronicle & Echo that their clinic aims to make baby scans more personal and clients have already described the clinic as a “homely environment.”
She said: “Unfortunately, with the NHS being so busy currently - which isn’t their fault - I just know they aren’t able to give that longer time slot that we can give our clients. They don’t feel rushed and they can take their time with us.”
To find out more about First Glimpse, visit https://first-glimpse.co.uk/