"I had my son at Jimmy's in ..."

About: St James's University Hospital

(as the patient),

What I liked

I had my son at Jimmy's in November, and can wholeheartedly say every midwife and nurse I dealt with was fantastic, and although we were left for hours at a time we always felt they were in control of the situation, even at 3am there was a lovely sense of lightheartedness amongst staff and patients - plus they made sure my partner was completely up to speed with what was happening as well as me - I would like to especially mention the pediatrics and neonatal unit team - all I dealt with were so lovely and really took care of both us and our new baby.

What could be improved

When the doctor who was later to assist in delivering my son got involved the communication dwindled and he only seemed interested in speaking with the midwife. He consistently left the door wide open with no curtain pulled across whilst I was at the most undignified point in my labour - staff and patients were walking past and able to look right in - and I was told my delivery would be assisted by ventouse and half an hour later a pair of forceps appeared as there was actually no ventouse in the room. My son was in the NNU for 24 hours due to foetal distress, although we were told several different stories over the course of the 5 days we were in hospital for. I was also told the doctor would prefer it if I would move the the antenatal unit due to only being 3cm dilated - even though I had been using gas and air for my now extremely painful contractions and none is available in the antenatal ward, and I would be moved back to the Del.Suite later subject to a bed being available - which I was - nearly 11 hours later, after being given morphine which I didn't want but would have taken anything to make the pain go away. (It didn't) I was left alone for hours in an immense amount of pain, in a silent ward of women in their early 3rd trimester trying to rest on a day assessment. The doctor gave me the option of being induced, then talked me out of it, insisting i move to another ward.

Anything else?

Although I had a particularly traumatic stay in hospital, I cannot fault the midwives or nurses on duty on anything. They were completely professional and seemed enitrely committed to whatever they were doing. This encounter will not prevent me in any way to returning to St James' for any babies I have in the future, and I would recommend it to anyone, although I may next time, unless completely necessary to my baby's wellbeing, request to limit the interaction with doctors to a minimum, as they didn't seem at all interested in properly communicating with me let alone speaking to us in any terms we non medical professionals would understand.

Story from NHS Choices

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