"Excellent staff but care could be more consistent..."

About: St Thomas' Hospital (London)

I was induced on 16/12/2014 being two weeks overdue in home from home. So many women were giving birth that day that I was kicked out of the room where I was having a bath whilst having contractions as a women needed suturing after giving birth. I was then transferred to another room where a woman was waiting to be induced. My original plan was to have an epidural but there was no room available in the birth centre. It is not until I was dilated at 08 cm that I finally arrived at the birth centre so I ended up using gas and air only. Between 03 and 08 cm I was left pretty much on my own with my partner, I was given paracetamol and different midwives were popping in time to time to see how I was getting on. They finally checked on me when they saw how distressed I was. I felt the care and support could have been better at that stage. Saying that, once I was properly looked after in the birth centre, the care and support were excellent. A senior midwife was called in when I had difficulties pushing and they were a god send. As I was pushing for 5 hours and my daughter's heartbeat was slowing down, they had to do an episiotomy which has healed very well. My baby and myself were in very good hands and the staff was experienced. I was treated with dignity and respect and the midwives were professional. I can't praise enough the postnatal care, the staff was so lovely and supportive. They attended all of our needs and explained everything. The support for breastfeeding was good. I wish I had that red button to call the midwife when I was at home with my baby. I was sharing the room with 2 other women, which all in all is not that bad. I agree with other people's comments when they say the waiting time is long for antenal care and labour and that it can get very crowded. I think the staff there is well trained and does an excellent job considering how busy they are. I do recommend this hospital but if you are looking for prompt attention and one to one full time care, then you should go private.

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Response from St Thomas' Hospital

Thank you for taking the time to share your feedback on St Thomas’ Maternity services. I am sorry to read that you did not experience the expected levels of care and support at the beginning of your admission to the Hospital Birth Centre. Your comments have been shared with the Matron responsible for the Hospital Birth Centre, who will reflect on your comments and aim to understand how your situation could have been managed differently. I am glad to learn that your experience improved as your delivery progressed and that your received excellent postnatal care.

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