"Brilliant overall"

About: Darent Valley Hospital

Following its regional reputation as a good hospital for maternity care, we referred ourselves here for our second pregnancy.

Care was exemplary right the way through, and we felt our birth plan was fully supported from the outset.

Shame that there are only 2 birth pools available for labouring women to use.

Hopefully the rise in demand for this pain relief option will encourage the unit to invest in more going forward.

Slightly disappointing that I received little support for a condition called SPD which I suffered from 18wks.

On a particularly bad day I would be crippled in pain and unable to walk at all.

Unfortunately DVH could not even lend me a pair of crutches to help me remain mobile, and we ended up having to buy some from an orthopaedic online supplier.

It is obviously a funding constraint and not DVH's direct fault that they were unable to help, the only advice I was given to manage this miserable condition was to obtain a prescription from my GP for Co-drydamols (strong painkiller) and pop them every 4hrs.

The facilities are outstanding and the staff, on the whole, epitomise everything a healthcare professional should.

The anaesthetist however let the side down, and made me feel extremely uncomfortable when I was in a position of extreme vulnerability.

The anaesthetist was monitoring my BP and spinal block throughout my post birth surgery, and despite the equipment being at my head end, the anaesthetist kept on standing foot end staring directly at the surgery being performed (my legs in stirrups).

I felt extremely embarrassed, so I tried to smile and be friendly, but the anaesthetist remained very cold and non-verbal.

I felt my dignity had been somewhat violated and burst into tears when I was transferred to the post-natal ward to recover.

My husband wanted to raise a complaint at the time, but I was just grateful for the safe delivery of our baby, and just wanted to go home asap.

Post-natal ward was lovely, food was delicious, and the breastfeeding support was great.

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Response from Darent Valley Hospital

Thank you for all of your kind words regarding your maternity care which have been passed onto the Maternity Department. We have also listened to your concerns regarding the mobility aids and anaesthetists which have been escalated to the relevant departments.

Kind regards

The Communications Team Darent Valley Hospital

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