"A mixed bag in terms of care during..."

About: Blackpool Victoria Hospital / Maternity care

This was my first experience of Blackpool Victoria maternity department as my other babies were born in Scotland. Due to being classed as "high risk" & requiring care from the EPU I found some of the nursing staff to be abrupt & lack compassion (the sonogrophers were always lovely & caring during scans though).

I was under consultant led care & the consultant was very professional & kind - I felt I both me & my baby were in safe hands. The Consultant clinic was always a nice experience.

During my 2nd trimester, I was admitted to hospital (ward D) for 4 nights & I received fantastic care from the doctors, midwives, maternity support workers & healthcare staff. It was a very worrying time & they reassured & supported me throughout. My antenatal stay on ward D was fantastic. Also, the maternity day unit was fantastic & the midwives I encountered were all lovely & professional. I had high hopes for the remainder of my pregnancy & birth/post natal experience.

Well, the night came when I went into labour & this is when things went a little downhill. My husband sadly couldn't be at the birth as he had to stay & look after our other children (It was midnight & our family live in a different country). So, I made my own way to hospital via a taxi & was kindly met at the out of hours labour suite door & taken to an assessment room. I was then left here on my own for around an hour or so having strong regular contractions. A lovely midwife then came to take me to the delivery room & she apologised for the wait as she said they were very busy. Once in the room, I was quickly assessed & hooked up to an antibiotic drip & given gas & air then the midwife had to leave to look after other ladies also in labour (she did come in every so often to check babies heartbeat). I was pretty much just left on my own though (No husband or birthing partner) & had to buzz the midwife when I had the urge to push. My baby got stuck in the birthing canal & wasn't coping very well & I'm very thankful to the midwife for recognising this & acting swiftly. My baby was born safely.

After a few hours I was assisted by another couple of midwives to get up & showered etc. Then the pressure started about me going home (I was still in the delivery room on the labour ward). Ideally, I would've liked to stay on ward D for a night to recover etc but that wasn't an option as I was informed they did not have a bed for me & I had to get discharged quickly as they required the delivery room I was currently in for another lady. I felt incredibly rushed & when my husband & children arrived to visit, they had to visit us in the delivery room which still had blood etc from delivery. Then they had to quickly leave to go back home to bring the carseat back up to the hospital (he also didn't expect me to get sent home so quick after giving birth).

So, in a nutshell, The majority of the staff I encountered were absolutely fantastic. However staffing & lack of beds are a major issue.

Story from nhs.uk


Response from Blackpool Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

Good Morning,

Thank you for taking the time to share your experience of your journey through our Maternity department. I am sorry to read that you found the staff on the Early Pregnancy Assessment Unit abrupt and felt that they lacked compassion. This is not the standard that we expect and I will share this with the teams involved.

It is fantastic to read that throughout the rest of your journey through Maternity you found the staff from the sonographers to the consultant, Maternity Day Unit to Ward D were caring, professional, supportive and kind.

Firstly I am pleased that your baby was born safely after what must have been a very scary time when your baby was struggling in the birth canal.

I am sorry to hear that you felt pressured in to going home. If you feel it appropriate and so that we can get further details about what has happened ensuring that your concerns are fully investigated, please can you contact our Patient Relations team directly on: patient.relations@bfwhospitals.nhs.uk.

I hope that you are both recovering well at home. If you would like to film your experience as part of the Patient Stories Programme please do not hesitate to get contact me: Leanne.macefield@bfwhospitals.nhs.uk

Warmest Regards


Patient Experience & Involvement Manager