"Not breastfeeding friendly, and nowhere..."

About: North Middlesex Hospital

What I liked

I was in for an induction and was on the labour ward for two days before giving birth. The midwives were nice, and the rooms were fine.

What could be improved

There was only one working toilet, which isn't enough in a busy labour ward! Whilst waiting to go into labour I had to spend two sleepless nights on a very uncomfortable delivery bed with no blankets.

My main issues, however, were on the post-natal ward. In four days, the only person who bothered to introduce herself was the student doctor.

During the whole time I was on the ward there was only a tiny handbasin available to wash in, as none of the baths or showers were in working order.

Despite the hospital promoting itself as breastfeeding-friendly, I felt positively discouraged from breastfeeding. There was no support or advice whatsoever, midwives and nurses were constantly trying to make me give my baby formula, and when I asked the nurse in charge if I could use the electronic breast pump she responded with scorn and only gave in when I burst into tears. It then turned out that nobody knew how to use it, so I was left to work it out for myself.

Finally, there was absolutely no reason for my baby and me to have been kept there for four days after the birth. We were repeatedly told that we would be going home soon, someone just had to tick a box, and then we were left hanging for hours. We were given excuse after excuse, and it was only when my partner told them on the fourth day that we were walking out that they finally got their act together and discharged us. It seemed as if it was more work to discharge us than to keep us there!

Story from NHS Choices

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Responses

Response from North Middlesex Hospital

We are sorry to hear that you felt your experience of the North Mid was a negative one. Improving the experience of our patients is the number one priority for the hospital and we will use your feedback to improve the service patients in that department receive.

The patient advice and liaison service would be glad to take any further comments you wish to provide about your care and can be contacted by email at pals@nmh.nhs.uk

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