"Post natal care at Northwick Park"

About: Northwick Park Hospital / Gynaecology

(as the patient),

I recently had my baby at Northwick Park hospital. Whilst the delivery was dealt with in a professional manner, the same cannot be said for the post natal care I received afterwards.

I had requested and paid for a private room and was ensured that I would still be attended to and not forgotten as I was not in the main ward. I was completely dismayed at the level of care received during the night. I was left completely alone and due to my delivery was still in a lot of pain and found it difficult to attend to my baby and feed her properly. No help was given with breastfeeding and when I pressed the bell and asked for help, the midwife stormed into the room and forcefully latched the baby onto my breast. She stood there for 30 seconds and stormed out of the room not bothering to wait and see if the baby remained latched on. Suffice to say, she did not and I was left sitting in tears feeling afraid to ask for help again. The next day I struggled on, again with no assistance from the midwives, despite being assured that the proper advice and help should be provided.

I explained that I required help with breastfeeding. The midwife assured me that if the baby had not fed by 11pm she would help me and show me to hand express, etc. At 11pm I went to the desk in tears and the same midwife said that she was too busy. The other midwives were sitting around having a chat and one of the other midwives said she would come and help me. Five minutes later, she stormed into the room, roughly sat me down and again practically shoved the baby onto my breast. Her once piece of advice to me was that I "would have to learn to do this on my own some day" - basically intimating that I should not bother her again. After 30 seconds she literally stormed out of the room by which time the baby had latched off. I was sitting in tears with my baby crying and screaming for food.

The next day, against the doctors advice as ny iron levels were too low, I begged to leave the hospital. I had not slept for 2 nights and had received no advice or practical help with breastfeeding. The discharge sheet had a list of things the midwives should have discussed with me about breastfeeding,none of which were done.

I found the whole epsisode in the hospital distressing and was shocked and dismayed at the lack of empathy and basic courtesy shown to another human being. My first two days as a mother bring flooding back bad memories purely down to the attitude of the staff. The subsequent care I received from the community midwife was again utterly abysmal. I have since come to stay in Leicester at my parents place and the advice received from the Health Visitor in this part of the country is the first real and practical advice received since the birth of my baby. I will never have another baby in the borough of Brent again.

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