"20 Week Scan"

About: Royal Bolton Hospital

I would like to thank the unfriendly staff member who scanned my unborn child today. Sadly due to work commitments, being overseas, I could not attend. How is it not allowed to have more than one adult in the room for a scan? my partners mum and sister (24 yrs old) traveled from Cumbria to support her and one of them had to sit in the waiting room, even though there was a spare seat in the scan room.

On a separate booking appointment (2 weeks before this scan) we asked the midwife is it possible to use a mobile at the scan, so Skype could be used whilst i was away and i could watch, listen to the joyous news of how my child is and what the sex would be the answer was 'shouldn't be a problem ask the sonographer' Brilliant!

My partner asked the sonographer, the answer of 'if you get your phone out i will terminate the exam' was a bit harsh, this obviously upset my partner as she knew i was sat waiting for the call! Due to her being upset the NHS professional wanted to reschedule the appointment again! My partners mum was rubbing her hands together as it was cold and the sonographer asked whether she was agitated and should she stop the scan and reschedule. Due to the appointment being 30 minutes late it seemed rescheduling was a priority.

I do hope you use this comment to cheer the sonographer up for their next days at work when they will be involved in such a momentous time for parents to be and not to worry i spent an hour cheering up my hormonal fiance on Skype after her joyous appointment!

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Response from Royal Bolton Hospital

Whilst we appreciate your disappointment we would like to explain that it is our normal practice and policy to permit one adult into the scan room during the medical examination. This is to allow the sonographer, who is a healthcare professional, to concentrate on the examination which is intended to establish normal development of a pregnancy and is not for the purposes of fetal sexing. However we appreciate that parents value the opportunity to share their experience with family and therefore, once the medical examination is completed and normal progress established, we permit a reasonable number of additional visitors to have a brief overview of the baby.

We do not permit the recording or live streamimg of any ultrasound examination. This policy is supported by the College and Society of Radiographers and the British Medical Ultrasound Society.

We have, on several occasions, experienced patients videoing examinations. On these occasions they are politely asked to stop and if they do not then the examination will be terminated.

Our policy is well documented on patient information leaflets and on signage in the maternity ultrasound department and is longstanding, although regularly reviewed in line with professional body recommendations.

With regard to your specific case, the concerns were brought to our attention by the sonographer and we have contacted the midwife concerned to correct any misunderstanding she had around this policy.

We're sorry you felt that the focus was on 'rescheduling'. The fetal anomaly scan should be performed between 18 and 20+6 weeks of pregnancy and can take up to 30 minutes. Delays can have significant knock on effect to other clinic patients and we endeavor to keep to time as much as possible whilst delivering a good quality diagnostic service.

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