"Please read this if you are considering giving..."
About: The Whittington Hospital The Whittington Hospital London N19 5NF
I felt compelled to write about my experience at the Whittington as after reading all the 5 star reviews by users who have given birth at the Birth Centre, I want to make it clear that the birth centre and maternity unit upstairs are two very different places. Firstly, to actually be allowed to set foot in the birth centre you need to be 100% risk free, primarily because it is much like giving birth at home down there. I'd had a perfect pregnancy but due to a misdiagnosis of my baby being in breach position, I was sent upstairs. Not because my baby was breach (no one realised this until his heart beat dropped off after 23 hours of labour and I was rushed in for an emergency C Section) but I was sent upstairs because I had spots of bleeding. If you are considering using the Whittington solely because of the birth centre, you should ask how many babies were born in there in a chosen month - you'll be shocked. Upstairs, the wards are vast and care is hit and miss. After birth care and adviser by midwives varies hugely. "Your baby is cold, wrap him up" followed minutes later by "your baby is too hot, take his hat off" - you get the idea. Most worrying of all however, is the compete lack of understanding regarding breastfeeding. My baby, and I, had trouble getting the hang of it. Rather than be supportive, I was told simply that we would not be allowed to go home until my baby put on weight (fair enough) but that it was strongly recommended that we feed him with a drip rather than use formula. While the young paediatrician left the room while my husband and I decided, it seemed the craziest idea to choose a drip for my 2 day old son, so to the sound of heavy sighing and disapproval by the paediatrician we chose formula. He thrived, and continued to thrive on formula and breast for the next 12 months. there is a reason that this hospital doesn't conduct tours of the maternity ward prior to labour, go with your instincts - and go to UCH instead.