"Turned away by triage twice"

About: Colchester General Hospital

I gave birth to my first healthy son in March earlier this year.

I live 45minutes from the hospital so was sure not to rush in when I went into labour.

I called triage when I was contracting every 2 minutes and they asked me to come in, but when they examined me I was only 1cm dilated so I was subsequently sent home.

3 hours later my waters broke and I was in so much pain I could hardly talk, my partner called triage (they had no record of my previous call or visit) and we were asked back in.

Once again I was sent home as I was only 1cm dilated, I asked to stay but was refused, my partner and mum were both with me and were shocked as they practically carried me back to the car.

2 Hours after returning home we called triage to ask if a midwife could come and see me at home given I live so far out to avoid another wasted trip. Apparently you can't unless you're registered for a home birth.

10 minutes after this call we rang again as the babies head was crowning and were told to call 999.

My son was delivered by my mum and went into respiratory arrest, thankfully a wonderful paramedic arrived shortly after and was able to revive him.

This situation was no thanks to triage and their awful system.

I am a first time mother and this traumatic birth was completely unnecessary.

6 weeks later I asked for a debrief meeting (not them) to try and get to the bottom of why I ended up in this situation, where it became clear the faults of the triage system were even worse than we had realised. They said sorry, but that was all, safe to say I will be opting for a home birth next time!

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Response from Colchester General Hospital

I am terribly sorry to read your comments.

Please contact me to discuss further.

Many kind regards

Tammy Diles Head of Patient Experience 07785588620

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