"Amazing Surgical Team but Horrible Midwives &..."

About: University College Hospital

I’m very happy with the pioneering equipment and service UCH offers + the amazing specialists and well-trained doctors and surgeons. However, nurses and midwives are inconsiderate.

UCH is among the very few UK hospitals which offers the Non-Invasive Prenatal Test for free + 3 scans during pregnancy: one around week 10-12, another around week 18-20, and a final one around week 33-35. If it weren't for the final scan, my baby and I would have been dead. It was only the last scan that determined my baby had growth restriction due to failed placenta and that I needed to be hospitalized and taken for a C-section within the next day or two. I consider myself very lucky and thank the specialists and the well-trained doctors for making that decision.

However, the midwives cannot be trusted. I kept telling them that anyone who sees me says I’m too small for 7-month pregnancy. But they did not care; the only thing they know is taking blood pressure and urine tests—but trust me, they don’t even know that. The night before I was hospitalized, I met with one of the midwives. I didn’t say anything to her just to see what she will tell me. My blood pressure was higher than usual and there was traces of protein in my urine—suggesting preeclampsia, but she said everything was alright.

I was scheduled to go for a C-section on Saturday around 10:00-11:00am, but at around 4:00am, an extreme stomachache woke me up. I thought I had food poisoning, but I hadn’t had any food the night before because of the next day C-section, which really puzzled me. I went to the bathroom trying my best to vomit thinking I might get better but it was only getting worse per minute. The nurses did not care; I emphasized the pain was in my abdominal and I needed a doctor. They ignored me saying the doctors are busy with other patients. The pain was the most extreme I’ve ever experienced in my life, but they didn’t do anything for me until 8:00am when I was restless; couldn’t sit; couldn’t walk; couldn’t lie down and the doctor finally came up. She was confident it was preeclampsia. They put me on a wheelchair and rushed me to theater. I was then kept at the hospital for 10 days because my liver and kidneys were failing. I had to give blood every 4 hours to be closely monitored.

Nevertheless, when I got home after all the drama, there was a letter in my mailbox from the midwife assuring me that I was not at risk of preeclampsia!!

I don’t think midwives are better elsewhere. At least UCH has the best equipment and service + amazing surgeons and specialists.

Story from NHS Choices

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Response from University College Hospital

Thank you for taking the time to feed back to us. We are very pleased that you are happy with the equipment and services and the specialist doctors and surgeons at UCLH.

We are, however, very sorry to hear about your recent experience of nursing and midwifery care at UCLH.

We would be grateful if you could contact our Patient Advice and Liaison Service (PALS) via pals@uclh.nhs.uk or by calling 020 3447 3042 so that we can look into this.

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