"Great labour ward - disappointing post-natal ward."

About: Royal Hampshire County Hospital

What I liked

The staff involved in my labour were really great, sympathetic and patient. Once my labour kicked off after a long start-stop laps, my labour midwife was fabulous, really passionate about helping me make the right choice and listening to my concerns etc. Bless her.

Post-natal ward - on the day of departure, great auxiliary nurse, very helpful, full of energy and coming forward with answers to questions I had not yet formulated about baby care but that I was glad to be told about.

What could be improved

Not much to say about labour ward, doing a great job despite I believe changing computer system/procedure the day I was admitted.

Post-natal ward: I cannot believe how unhelpful the midwifes were. I felt I was a load to them all the time. Could see the staff chatting in the computer room, overhearing them talking/commenting about patients (!!!) and just looking at the ward without doing anything, how shocking!

The staff has to realise that some mothers are left groggy by the birth experience (drug, pain, etc.) and need the staff to be caring. Instead I felt left to my own device.

I was not checked out at all before leaving and as a result, had an infection that took 3 weeks to be detected as it was Xmas time! Feeling let down is an understatement!

However I had friends who gave birth a week before and were offered a private room, and reported how very helpful the midwifes were, so 2 possibilities:

- pot luck with midwifery quality

- two tier care private room/ward

To be pondered by the staff, I do not have the answer.

Anything else?

It would be great for this hospital to see how they can help mothers co-sleep with their baby when the baby is obviously distressed being separated from the mother in the cot and the mother clearly needing to recover by getting some sleep. Help should be spontaneously offered, not waiting to be asked all the time, as mum is groggy from labour!

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Responses

Response from Royal Hampshire County Hospital

'Firstly thank you for your lovely comments and for taking the time to point out areas for improvement; I have shared this with the staff to raise awareness. I would like to apologise for your disappointment for some aspects of your care; over the past few months I really hope we have improved on the issues you have raised. I have appointed a new ward sister and increased the number of staff. I would be happy to meet and discuss further if you feel this would be helpful.'

Kind Regards

Janie Pearman

Head of Midwifery & Gynaecology

Winchester & Eastleigh NHS Trust

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