"Maternity care"

About: Whiston Hospital / Maternity care

(as the patient),

I was admitted to ward 2e from the delivery suite at 3pm, 3cm dilated with contractions 5 minutes apart.

I was first acknowledged 7 hours later by a member of the night staff who put me on the monitor and told me I wasn't in labour because the contractions weren't close enough. I requested an internal examination and some pain relief after midnight as I felt that labour was progressing and I was very uncomfortable.

I was refused the internal examination and was told that "there is no point because you are probably about 4cm and will just go on a waiting list for the delivery suite". Instead I was given paracetamol and told to get in the bath, which I did. I tried distracting myself and went on the monitor again to be told I wasn't in labour as the contractions were too far apart.

After this, still struggling, I asked if there was anything I could have for the pain and was given more paracetamol. I was told by a different midwife to get in the bath and when I informed her that I had already had one, she simply said "well get another one then".

I did this and although it helped temporarily, the pain was increasing and I asked to be checked. I was put on the monitor again and was told "you're not in labour, when you are you won't even be able to talk" which isn't very reassuring for a first time mum! I was also shaking uncontrollably at this time and when I asked why it was happening I was told I was probably cold (I was later told on the delivery suite that this is a sign of advanced labour).

Fifteen minutes later I went to the toilet and my waters broke. Having no option but to finally complete an internal examination, the midwife discovered I was actually 9cm dilated and sent me immediately over to the delivery suite (and contractions were still 5 minutes apart and yes I could still talk throughout them! ). I felt dismissed by the midwifery team and left unnecessarily uncomfortable and anxious throughout my stay on the ward. On the plus side, there was a very lovely student midwife who was very caring and compassionate.

On arrival to the delivery suite things progressed quickly and my daughter was delivered by Kay at the end of her shift. All staff involved in the delivery were brilliant and reassuring.

After the birth and for the rest of the day I was cared for by Mary, an Irish midwife, who was absolutely amazing and made my stay an enjoyable and unforgettable experience.

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Response from Whiston Hospital

Thank you for your comment. We are very sorry to learn that not all aspects of the care you received met with your satisfaction. If you would like to discuss this further so that we can learn from your experience to improve our services, please contact the PALs team on 0151 430 1376 who will be happy to assist you with your concerns. We will also feedback to the staff involved your positive comments. Thank you once again and congratulations!

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