"Aberdeen maternity"

About: Aberdeen Maternity Hospital / Obstetrics (Maternity care)

(as the patient),

After hearing horror stories about Aberdeen maternity recently, I was pretty scared and worried about the care and support I was going to be given during and after my birthing experience.How wrong was I!

My expectations where so low that I put off informing them I was in labour, once I did I was told to go to westburn ward as we thought I had a temperature. Once there, we where greeted by a lovely midwife. I was Taken through to be assessed, not knowing anything about what was happening to my body I was pretty scared and raised a concern that was checked and reassured straight away!

As my labour progressed we had to ring for the midwife a few times and she was there straight away! My labour progressed pretty quick! We where waiting on the labour ward to phone back with a bed when the urge to push came! Thankfully a room became available and they rushed me through straight away where I was greeted by the midwife that would deliver my son She was brilliant! Also a nurse joined us, my son was her first birth (she almost missed it too) I didn't want any pain relief as wanted to be aware of what was going on, she was so attentive and always explaining what was happening. ! Even had a giggle through it! There was a complication, which would involve me needing pain relief which I didn't want. The midwife, knowing how painful the procedure she was going to have to do was refusing to do it without pain relief. (Which shows the care she had for her patient who wasn't thinking straight through exhaustion and fear) thankfully as the midwife sent the nurse away to get the things she needed my son was on his way and as the nurse walked in the door he was born!

These two ladies kept my spirits high and were very encouraging throughout! My son was born in the early morning, this midwife had delivered three babies before my son, she came and checked in on us until the end of her shift at 7am. By then she looked more tired than I did! At this point I realised she didn't really get a break, (not that she wanted one, she was more interested in us) how long had she gone without one? Then thinking why wasn't there a room available? Then remembering seeing in westburn there was only three midwifes on for I think 12 rooms? ! They are seriously understaffed I think, and the staff that are there, are running themselves into the ground doing what they clearly love doing!

I'm so grateful for what they did for me, my son and my partner! We were then put to Ashgrove ward, I'd heard bad things about there too. My son needed his blood sugar checked every three hours. They were there bang on time throughout our stay! My partner eventually went home when he didn't have a choice, so I was alone with my son.

I still hadn't slept, in the early hours I finally nodded off. My son woke up needing changed but as I went to sit up I realised I had bled onto the bed. I sat there extremely embarrassed then attempted to get up, as I was doing so I knocked my jug of water all over myself! I was defeated so I had to buzz for help, two midwifes came.

I went to the loo to clean myself up, I was about 5-10 mins. By the time I came out my bedding had been changed, my son changed, fed and settled. This was what I was told to worry about, that apparently they don't come on time, they leave you in dirty sheets, they leave you to struggle. Do they heck! They are there when you need them! Even when your not admitted! Extremely professional and happy bunch! They all do an amazing job!

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Response from Linda Oldroyd, Nurse Consultant Patient Safety and Experience, NHS Grampian

Dear Kleighm

Many thanks for taking the time to post your story on Patient Opinion. Staff will be delighted to hear that they are so appreciated for the job they do.

None of us would like to think that our reputation for delivering a high standard of person-centred care in a compassionate manner is under any doubt but clearly you did have reservations about coming in to Aberdeen Maternity Hospital.

I hope that other expectant mums are reassured about the quality of our care through reading this post.

Staff do work very hard and can be very tired after a 12 hour shift but as you found, they do their jobs with a smile and because they love what they do.

Your story highlights what is important to patients and what matters to them. A smile, kindness, explanations, good communication and team work are all part and parcel of how we aim to deliver care which is both person-centred and compassionate.

Good luck with your son, congratulations and thank you again.

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