"Good staff who turned a great experience..."

About: The Great Western Hospital

What I liked

All our three children have been born in the GWR maternity unit, and it's a great facility close to M4 so is much easier to get to in a hurry than other local hospitals.

Knocking before entering in delivery suite was a nice touch, and midwives all friendly and professional (see below).

What could be improved

People - customer service training. Every time, my wife was warmly welcomed, quickly assessed and generally kept up to date for the first hour. Brilliant!

Then, once the mums-to-be are in the 'queue' for delivery suite, nothing. Quite regular to have no update/visit for two hours, so no idea where you are in the queue/why it's taking so long etc. Defeat from victory.

Processes - going to hospital to give birth is a wonderful occasion. The NHS has to work really hard to turn such a life-affirming joyful experience into something so mired in petty bureaucracy.

I was told 'partners can't have a cup of tea, just patients because we don't have enough cups. The NHS has a £100bn a year budget but not enough for a cup of tea! Priceless.

Patient care - the midwife who failed to get a drip needle in my wife's vein twice at least had the nous to go and get someone else.

After care - new babies have to be cleared by a paediatrician before discharge. We learnt after baby no.2 that it can take them 6 hours to get to you on their rounds, so you're ready to go home, but have no idea when that might be. This time, we'd wised up....get your name on the morning rounds booked in with night shift for paediatrician to see you first thing, and be up and ready to go.BureaucracyCustomer serviceOpening hoursReceptionChildrenMaternityPatient careBabiesMidwife

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Response from The Great Western Hospital

Thanks for your constructive feedback. Your feedback has been passed on to the General Manager for Women and Children's Services at Great Western Hospital to share with the Maternity team. We are currently in the process of training Midwives to perform baby checks so that parents and babies can go home more quickly. If you have any other thoughts or suggestions, please contact our Patient Advice and Liaison Team at pals.team@gwh.nhs.uk or by phone on 01793 604376.

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