"Disgusting and disgraceful Maternity Services"

About: The Whittington Hospital

I have now visited the maternity triage department at this hospital 3 times and I can honestly say that the people who work their are horrific. They have the worst attitudes and are completely unprofessional. I came in today with spotting at 35 weeks pregnant and had to wait 5 hours to be seen by a doctor. The midwives are disgusting. They have no social skills, are unbelievably rude and are the most unprofessional people I have ever come across. My favourite example is when I visited previous to today and the midwife in triage was slouched in her chair playing candy crush and when I approached her when I arrived and explained what my problem was she didn't even look up from her tablet, now we all know how addictive candy crush can be, but it begs the question what are we paying these people for? She then proceeded to argue with me for not having my yellow book and showed no compassion or concern for why I had even brought myself into triage. My experience today was horrific to say the least. After waiting for 4 hours I was taken through to one of the 3 cubicles they have and when I asked a question, which was, who am I waiting to see, the midwife then proceeded to be extremely rude behind my back when the curtain was closed about what I had said knowing full well I could hear every word she was saying. It is completely unacceptable to have people so rude and unprofessional working in the care sector, basic manners is something that shouldn't have to be taught to people doing this job. Being a midwife is about being caring and compassionate and understanding that for first time mothers this is a scary and unsure time in their lives. I have never once seen the same midwife during my 35 weeks of care and often when I do see one they don't really have any answers to the questions I am asking. The woman who scanned me at my 12 week scan was extremely rude and off hand which was extremely upsetting because it is supposed to be a special time in peoples lives. If the people providing the care are rude and unprofessional it gives you no faith in them looking after you in the correct way. I am seriously considering changing hospitals after this evenings events as I am certain I don't want any of the midwives that I have encountered so far coming anywhere near me during my birth. I don't trust them in the slightest and certainly don't feel that there will be enough doctors on hand to assist properly or provide proper care if in the emergency triage department they can only provide one doctor every 5 hours to patients. This really is a shame as i have been going to the Whittington since I was a baby having been born in North London.

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Response from The Whittington Hospital

We are very sorry to hear that you had such a poor experience on our Maternity Unit. The Head of Midwifery has been made aware of your comments and wishes to apologise for the attitude of the staff who were on duty when you visited the unit. All staff have been reminded to be professional at all times and not to use their mobile phones whilst at work. As a Trust we are committed to providing compassionate care for all our patients and agree that the experience you have described is unacceptable. We are sorry that you had to wait so long to be seen by a doctor. It may be that the doctors were on labour ward dealing with clinical emergencies and therefore unable to respond as quickly as they normally would for women waiting on Triage; however without knowing the dates you attended we cannot be sure of the reasons. As Triage is a drop in service, women are seen in order of priority including those women on labour ward, so it is impossible to predict how long a woman may have to wait to be seen by a doctor. We are sorry to hear that your experience was so poor you are considering changing hospitals. The Head of Midwifery would be very happy to to meet with you about your comments or anything else which may be concerning you about your planned treatment. If you feel this would be helpful please can you contact the PALS office on 020 7288 5551 or via email at whh-tr.whitthealthpals@nhs.net and the team will be able to arrange this for you. Thank you for taking the time to share your experience with us.

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