"Very disappointing!"

About: Queen Charlotte's Hospital

I had my first born in the birthing centre and I was very pleased with the professional care I received during labour and throughout my pregnancy. So much so, I recommended my two sisters in law to have their babies there too, which they went on to do. However, this time around seems to be the complete opposite. At my 34 week appointment in the antenatal clinic, I was asked about my birth plan and where I wanted to give birth. I expressed to the midwife that I would like to go back to the birth centre for the birth of my second child and so she referred me. During this conversation I asked if a water birth would be possible (this was the plan for my first born but he came too soon!) I was gladly told that this would be possible. Two weeks later when I returned for my 36 week appointment, with yet again, another midwife! I was asked rather abruptly why had I been referred to the birth centre and told my BMI of 38 didn't meet the criteria to give birth in the birth centre and that there was no way i would be having my baby there. You could imagine the stress and emotion I was just put under. Throughout my whole pregnancy I made it very clear where and what sort of birth I wanted. I was out under the impression that all is well and like with my first born, I would be able to give birth in the birth centre. May I also add that my BMI was around the same at the time of birth with my first born and there were no complications what so ever with my first pregnancy nor this one, so why am I not able to now?! After finding out the BC wasn't an option I asked what other options I had and once again asked, if a water birth would still be possible. I was relieved when I was told i would still be able to have a water birth in the delivery suite. A week or so later I was then contacted by a member of the BC asking to book me a 38 week appt. I told her that I had been told to book my 38 week appointment with my go and not the midwifes. I also expressed my confusion as to why j was being contacted by the BC when I was told it wasn't an option. After explaining what I had been told, the lady on the other end simply replied "oh.. No, you can't give birth here then." She went on to tell me i'll be put on the labour ward and a water birth isn't at all possible because of my BMI. She also told me the cut off point with regards to BMI is 34. I was told by another midwife at my 36 week appt that it was 35.. Yet again different midwives supplying me with different information.The conversation ended with me being very angry and upset with all the different information I have been given. I am greatly saddened that I am now being put under all this stress with under 4 weeks to go until my due date. Due to all the different information given by various midwives I now do not have a clue what is going on.. Where I'll be giving birth and If I'm honest I'm not sure that I even want to have my baby at queen charlottes any more.

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Response from Queen Charlotte's Hospital

Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust is very concerned to read of your experience at Queen Charlotte's & Chelsea Hospital. We sincerely apologise for the poor communication and the distress and you have been caused at such an important time. It is important to us to ensure you have a good birth experience and to enable us to take your concerns forward we hope you will contact our PALS service pals@imperial.nhs.uk

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