"Contrasting experience of maternity care"

About: Princess Royal University Hospital / Maternity St Helier Hospital / Maternity

(as the patient),

I delivered my elder son in winter 2013 in St Heliers MLU. I'm a neonatology doctor from Sri Lanka and was working in a maternity unit there and it was only two months I arrived in the UK that I delivered my son.

I was fully dilated when I arrived at the hospital and I knew it because I was getting more frequent contractions. As I broke my waters I was scared of a cord prolapse and went to the MLU in a wheel chair. The mid wife asked me why I came in a wheelchair and I was in so much pain I couldn't open my mouth, then when my husband said that I broke my waters she said that if I'm not adequately dialated she would send me home with cocodomol. She was not happy that I came on a wheel chair.

And then some how I was fully dialated for 5 hours without any painkillers and ultimately ended up in a vaccum extraction. After the delivering the baby the doctor had to go for another emergency and the I was just lying there with my legs apart and, I had to ask the midwife to put a pad and put my legs together and cover me after waiting for 10-15 mins hoping she would do that. Then I had to ask her whether I can feed my baby. Then she said that I have to do it by myself. She was very busy in documenting.

Then the doc came after some time and sutured the episiotomy. And after that the mid wife said that I have to take a shower and left me with my husband and the baby saying that she has some paper work. When I got off from the bed I just fell down on the floor coz I was so tired and cox of the entonox I had during the suturing of the episiotomy. Because the bathroom was not close by and we can't leave our baby alone I walked along in the corridor holding the wall but again fell on the floor, then I shouted asking for help and a midwife appeared from a room and helped me in to the bath room. She was very kind and said she will send my husband and will take care of the baby.

In my country nurses and midwives never let a mother get down from the bed unassisted even after a normal vaginal delivery. So I thought it is the British way of treating mothers and just kept quiet.

But I realized that it is not the British way coz it was totally different way that I was treated during the delivery of my second son in Princess's Royal Hospital Orpington. The midwives were so caring and specially Margeret Jones and Sam. When I recall the delivery of my second son it always brings me pleasant memories just because the team were sooo kind and caring. And they helped to change my view about Britsh way of treating mothers who had just given birth to a baby. Thanks Princess Royal Hospital maternity team.

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