"Extreme understaffing at Rothschild Ward"

About: Stoke Mandeville Hospital

My baby boy was delivered last week. Within the labour department, I cannot commend the care and treatment I received highly enough. I was listened to as soon as I walked in through the door and everything went as smoothly as it could have. A massive thank you to a particular member of staff (for the delivery) and everyone else involved post delivery! However, my main issues occurred when I reached the labour ward. Although when I received treatment/care it was excellent, it was very difficult to come by. On joining the ward around 7am, I was not seen for over three hours despite my continual requests for help with post baby issues and my newborn given I had a spinal tap and was numb for 4/5 hours post operation. It did seem very surprising therefore that the nurse who did eventually see me around 11am was shocked to learn no-one had been to see me beforehand. Needless to say things were not pleasant at this time. As the day progressed, it was very clear the ward was very understaffed. I was given various times I was to be visited by midwives and for injections to be administered but these didn't happen. A doctor eventually came to see me around 5pm and I was told I simply needed 2 injections (of which I already knew about were to be given by 6pm) before I could be discharged, but these were only given until after 8:30pm after frequent requests for an update by my husband. Another area I picked up on for improvement is it would have been useful if there was more communication between the paediatric and midwife teams. They need to work more closely and efficiently as mother and baby are treated as two separate patients. This was very apparent when it came to trying to get us discharged as this was a very messy process for the scenario mentioned above when my baby was ready to go home much earlier in the day. It would have helped if I was given some priority if anything to free up the bed rather than have a patient waiting for hours to be discharged only for a couple of injections.

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Response from Stoke Mandeville Hospital

Dear Mrs Permal Congratulations to you and your family. We hope you and your son are doing well. Thank you for taking the time to comment on your experience. We are pleased that you were happy with the care provided to you in the delivery suite but are sorry to read about the delays experienced in the postnatal ward. We will make sure your comments are fed back to the department, but if you would like to discuss in more detail please contact our Patient Advice & Liaison Service on 01296 316042 or pals@buckshealthcare.nhs.uk Kind regards Buckinghamshire Healthcare NHS Trust

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