"I had my first baby here in August ..."

About: Good Hope Hospital

What I liked

I had my first baby here in August 2006 by induction due to post-dates. My experience at the time was ok, however, the staff were incredibly busy at the time and I didn't feel the care was to the standard it should have been. Not because of the staff, but they were too stretched and the wards weren't as clean as they could have been.

I returned this month for the birth of our second child and I have to say I was really pleasantly surprised. It was far cleaner and a much better experience from when I stepped in the door. The two midwives looking after me were fantastic and knew when I wanted to be left alone but monitored me and encouraged me fantastically. They gave me choices about breaking my waters when things were slowing down and constantly told me why they were doing things and what my options were. This is the reason I managed to get through the birth with only a Tens unit for pain relief due to the support offered. Afterwards, I had a few problems but all the staff were incredibly prompt with all the problems and I always felt safe and that they were in control. I was nervous when they told me the midwife was going to suture me following a bad tear as she was still being taught. However, she was absolutely fantastic and under wonderful supervision she stitched me fantastically and I have had far less pain from them than my last birth.

On the ward, it was clean, with lots of supportive midwives. They listened to my wants for discharge and we saw all paediatricians and everyone in excellent time and they all seemed to communicate fantastically.

Much better than being on the ward the first time round!!

A very big thank you to the midwives who were excellent.

What could be improved

The antenatal care of scans etc. as I often had a two hour + wait, and on one occasion was forced to make a different appointment and come back when I have a 30 min journey. Very frustrating and didn't seem to be one-offs.

The fact that I had a delivery suite with a bathroom which was shared with another patient. The patient in the other room had only just given birth so it meant I could hear her in the bathroom whilst I was in labour which was distracting but mainly I felt this was a hygiene issue. I had to keep using the bathroom when it still had blood etc. on the floor from the other lady and this wasn't cleaned after she left even though it seemed that there would have been time before I went in to shower. I think she left at 2pm ish and I delivered at 4.30pm. This was the only thing I was unhappy with and we resorted to trying to clean some areas ourselves. Although in hindsight we should have asked a midwife if it could be cleaned.

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Response from Good Hope Hospital

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