Bristol birth - St Michaels or Southmead?(14 Posts)
Cossham Birth Centre is part of North Bristol NHS trust though so you can only use that if you're registered with Southmead in the first place.
St Mikes is a different NHS trust.
I'm due to have a ELCS at St Michael's soon and am pleased that, needing consultant led care, there was both a midwife led unit AND a central delivery suite. If they're available and you want to, you can pay for a private room if the four-bed ward is not your thing. The CDS have private emquite labour rooms, which look great. The MWLU have new facilities, that also look good. Though I have heard, if you have a problem free delivery excpected that the facilities at Cosham are amazing. BUT if anything goes wrong you have to be prepared for an ambulance ride to hospital.....
I think even the individual wards make a difference for postnatal care. At Southmead Mendip ward consists of about 20 beds in one room but Percy Phillips is several smaller rooms, I believe. I really wasn't impressed by my postnatal care on Mendip but I have a friend who's a midwife at St Michaels & she says the care I received was pretty standard for the UK in general so I doubt it'd be any better elsewhere! I can't comment on the labour facilities though - I had DS at home & had to transfer in afterward. FWIW, I'm planning a second homebirth now but if I were going to go anywhere it'd be to the new midwife centre rather than either hospital.
Would you be eligible/interested in Cossham? That's literally just opened this month:
Transferred into St Michaels after giving birth at home last Aug - got to say although others said they didn't like the post-natal ward (too noisy), I really liked it. Helped that I had a bed next to window so could see out over the city (lovely views!). I even rather liked the food! Was only there for a couple of days though. Might well have got if I was in for weeks, though if you are then do ask about private rooms. (They have some but they aren't always available, depending on how busy it is).
They were pretty helpful to me in getting breastfeeding established - midwives came and got baby latched on the first few feeds, and then noticed I was only feeding lying down (couldn't get the hang of latching on sitting up) and helped me figure out how to get him latched on properly sitting up.
Would second trying to go for a tour - remember you can still change your mind if you have your tour after the mw appt and decide you actually want to go to the other hospital. I also got asked which I wanted at booking in, picked on the spot as I didn't have a clue! I picked St Michaels because it was closer to work than Southmead was, which turned out to be quite handy for appointments etc.
I've had 2 dc at Southmead, one an induction the other a planned CS, both went very well and all the midwives & drs were nice. It was thanks to a particularly good midwife that I narrowly avoided an episiotomy with dc1. But I've heard only good things about st michael's too.
I've given birth at both and currently about to have dc3 in st mikes.
Both do tours. You could have a look around and see where you feel most comfortable.
Southmead were great. Parking is terrible though and expensive and traffic a nightmare, but probably the same at St Michaels! Just hope you don't go into labour during rush hour!
Hi there I had my son at St Michaels nov 2011, I had group b strep and they were fantastic throughout the whole labour process, I ended up having him delivered with forceps which was traumatic but again the care was outstanding. The after care now that's another matter, it was terrible was left for long period of time with no water dirty bloody sheets that I had asked to be changes several times, no help with breast feeding was doing it all wrong until I got help from my local hospital, went for a shower to find whole room covered in another persons blood, made to wait 6 hours when myself and son were ready to leave waiting medication, but I am due again and would have my next baby there as know what care I should receive this time round and would not be shy in complaining and most importantly my baby was born healthy x
Thank you for the responses. I am leaning slightly towards Southmead. We have been told we can use either - I live directly in the middle of the two - perhaps that is why...
I have done both with the same labour! Started at one then transferred to other. Them spent two weeks at both of them.
Normally your midwife does births at one or the other but not both. So she will normally tell you which one its normal for her patients to give birth at. I guess you could request the other one, but you prob then would have a different midwife team from the one you have now. Have they said you can pick? That is quite unusual.
Having done both, I would say the actual hospital doesn't make much difference, its the midwife on duty at the time that makes the difference. I did not rate the after care at south mead, although the nicu is excellent.
As I say, all depends on who you get on the day!
I've given birth twice at Southmead. First in maternity ward, se ind in birthing suite. Both good experiences. Think parking is better at Southmead!
I've registered for Southmead. Had 12 wk scan last week and they are all lovely! There's a MW led delivery suite with 4 rooms as well as maternity ward so you can keep away from the docs if all is well.
Just wondering if there are any Bristol mumsneters who have given birth at either St Michaels or Southmead? I have my first midwife appointment next week and need to choose.... Any thoughts on either? I think St Michaels has a new midwife-led unit....
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