"Understaffed and overworked"

About: Leicester Royal Infirmary

I gave birth to my daughter in October 2014, and my overall impression of the Maternity Department at the Leicester Royal Infirmary was it is completely understaffed, and overwhelmed with the demands placed on it. A couple of incidents will summarise my opinion: I was due to be induced on a Thursday, and told ring at 8am to book myself in. I rang, and was told that there were no beds free. I was then told to ring back on the Friday. I rang, same again, no beds, ring again Saturday. I rang Saturday, and was told to come in - I'd been waiting for over 50 hours, and the stress to my partner and I was unbearable. I was in LRI for a total of 8 days and quite quickly I noticed that pregnant women are left waiting for significant lengths of time (6+ hours). For example, I was told on the Tuesday morning I needed to see a doctor, the doctors didn't start their rounds until later than evening, however before they came to my bay with 3 other ladies in their shift finished - and they went home. So actually, I didn't see the doctor until the next shift came on - which was early hours in the morning. The other ladies in my bay were as pleased as I was! I got to know the LRI staff whilst I was there, and they all said the same thing, they are far too busy for the amount of staff they have - the running joke was that the "if you can work at the LRI Maternity, you can work in any LRI Maternity". It didn't fill me with confidence, and I certainly wouldn't go back their. Saying that, every midwife is fantastic, they give 110% - there just isn't enough of them. Two particular midwives who got me through labour itself, were absolutely brilliant and supported me above and beyond any reasonable expectation - they are what the NHS is about and what keeps the NHS going - unfortunately the system lets them down.

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Response from Leicester Royal Infirmary

Dear Amy, We are incredibly sorry to read about your experience. Its a shame that the business of the midwives and the department had a negative impact on your birthing experience. In order for us to learn from your experience and make improvements to the service, we would like to offer you the opportunity to meet the senior midwifery team to discuss this in more detail. If you would like to arrange this, please contact senior midwife, Joan Morrissey on 0116 258 4865 or 07717 694359, or email joan.morrissey@uhl-tr.nhs.uk Joan would be happy to arrange a meeting at the hospital, or at your home, whichever works best for you. Kind regards Communications Team Leicester's Hospitals

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