"Maternity care"

We had our first baby here in feb 2014. The care both I and the baby received was excellent. The midwife was excellent & really supported the kind of labour and birth I chose to have (we wanted a natural, non medicated delivery). She also stayed on past her shift as i was near the end of my labour, in order that i wouldn't need to deal with a new person at that stage. She kept us informed throughout of everything she was doing and why. The whole team both on the labour ward and joan booker ward were extremely caring and attentive despite it being an extremely busy day. we were not rushed and felt we were given a lot of time for any questions we had. On the Joan booker ward the midwives came and introduced themselves at each shift change which made everything feel more familiar. We were given hours of skin to skin with our baby before they did the necessary checks and were moved off the labour ward only when we were ready. We opted for a private room, I did observe that the shared ward felt quite cramped especially during visiting hours, but it was completely full so I guess that can't be helped. The only other observation was that as the ward was full, the midwives were very busy so it took about 4 hours for them to discharge us on the day we left, as they kept getting called away to attend to patients and couldn't find time to finish our final paperwork. But they were apologetic (& I think it's right that paperwork comes after patient care) During my pregnancy the care was also great. I was admitted to triage to monitor reduced fetal movement at an early stage and got exactly the attentive reassurance and the thorough checks which I would have expected. Overall the care I received and continue to receive now post natally, was/is excellent and I would highly recommend St Peters maternity unit and services for any mums to be.

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Response from Ashford & St Peters Hospital

Congratulations on the arrival of your baby and many thanks for your lovely comments about our maternity team. We have passed them onto the midwives in our Antenatal Clinic, on Labour Ward and Joan Booker and are so pleased to hear you had a positive experience. We do try to discharge women as early in the day as possible, but as you say, it does depend on how busy the ward is and how many women we have to discharge on that particular day. We are currently trying to improve our processes by identifying women the previous day who are likely to be able to go home early the next morning - so we can plan ahead better. We hope you have settled into family life at home and thanks again for your positive feedback.

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