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To have lost confidence in the NHS

(45 Posts)
Littleelffriend Wed 25-Nov-15 15:25:40

I've had a pretty underwhelming experience with the NHS since discovering I was pregnant.

I had to make an appointment to see the GP first. Have no idea why as all she did was tell me to make an appointment with the midwife at reception.
Made an appointment (took the one they offered, even though the time was really inconvenient), turned up on time. The midwife was 30 mins late (this is fine, I had a book with me). When she took me, she said she no longer had time for my appointment and could I attend the hospital 2 days later as she would be there.
Attended the hospital at said time (more time off work). Midwife greets me with "I don't have time to see you, xxx will see you instead". Do standard blood tests etc with new midwife.
Receive a letter from doctor saying they are unhappy with one of my blood tests. Called to make an appointment with the nurse. When I turned up, she acted like it was a huge hassle to actually explain what the problem was with the blood test, told me I "didn't look pregnant". At this, I told her I had my first scan that afternoon. She asked if my partner was going-he wasn't as he is abroad working to which she replied "haven't you got a mum?" Erm, no, she died a few months ago and I left in tears.
Went to the scan that afternoon, had to fight my way through the pregnant smokers at the door (NHS Scotland is "smoke free"), was 1.5hrs late in being taken for my appointment-no apology. I was the last one in the waiting room so all the staff were standing around moaning about how busy they were, how fed up they were and how over booked the scanning department is.

I understand how over worked and under paid a lot (not all) NHS staff are. I know that appointments run over, and of course urgent cases should be taken first. But I've been left with no real confidence in my care team, and feel that some of my concerns have just been swept under the carpet (eg I had loop diathermy under general anaesthetic in a different area, same country but they can't find my notes so this is not being taken into account).

Am I wrong to expect a bit more?

goodnightdarthvader1 Wed 25-Nov-15 15:31:31

My community midwife care has been poor. Pregnant women are getting shafted in this country.

DisneyMillie Wed 25-Nov-15 15:34:11

Unfortunately I completely agree with you. I'm 15 weeks pregnant and had a fairly big bleed a couple of weeks ago. Was told bed rest but the doctor didn't hang around long enough to explain what that meant / risks of blood clots etc.

Then had a scan last week and they refused to even look at my cervix even though I've had loop diathermy too and am concerned it might be the cause (I understand it might not be but they refuse to even try and work out if there's something wrong that could be sorted).

I haven't been checked for infection and 2 weeks later and still spotting and all the midwife (never spoken to the same one twice) will say is well you're talk early, it might be a miscarriage, wait and see!

I've given up with the NHS and we're seeing a private consultant Monday - luckily I can afford it but it seems very unfair that I have to do this to get anyone to talk to me without the feeling I'm being a pain to them.

DisneyMillie Wed 25-Nov-15 15:35:01

*still not talk

BeverlyGoldberg Wed 25-Nov-15 15:35:57

My care was poor and it got worse. You have to fight for everything.

You're not wrong, it's a worrying time for new mums but they're too busy and too over stretched to do their jobs properly, let alone show any compassion.

I ended up with two gems of community midwives who saved my life after the hospital nearly finished me and DD off.

If something doesn't feel right, trust your instinct and challenge it.

Sparklycat Wed 25-Nov-15 15:39:00

I have had no faith in the nhs for many years. They nearly killed my father causing him to eventually loose a limb through their neglect, then a few years later they did kill him by giving him too much fluid through a drip and flooding his lungs. Then they almost killed my baby through neglect in labour and refusing to listen to me. I never trust anything they say or do now.

Jelly101 Wed 25-Nov-15 15:45:02

My community midwife is also poor. Forgot to book my 12 week scan and then went on holiday for 3 weeks. I was booked in for a scan at 21 weeks, the midwife didn't say where it was. With my last pregnancy she wrote it in my notes, but I couldn't find anything in there. I tried to contact her before scan, and rang her a total of 53 times. It either went straight to voicemail or rang for a bit and cut off. So, because she didn't say anything else, I presumed it was at the community neighbourhood centre where I had both my scans with my DS. I got a taxi to the neighbourhood centre (I tried to ring and confirm this beforehand but it was closed), which is about 15/20 minutes away, to be told that my appointment is at the hospital. By the time I got there I was an hour late and they said they didn't know if they could see me. I had to get another taxi to the hospital which is a further 20/30 minutes away, so I wasn't happy.

Oh and when I had my first appt with her for this pregnancy, she greeted me with 'oh it's you again is it?' hmm

strawberryandaflake Wed 25-Nov-15 15:47:07

Had exactly the same experience. I'm 36 weeks and only got a midwife properly last week. I asked the consultant a simple question and he said 'I'm just here to sign off your notes'.

Appalling isn't it?

manana21 Wed 25-Nov-15 15:51:27

whereabouts are you in the UK? I've got family with many bad experiences of the NHS all in the south of England but my care for DD2 in Scotland (had DD1 abroad) was mostly reassuring and good - had a major PPH with DD1 and this was fully investigated and planned for by the time I had DD2. The community midwives were great.

strawberryandaflake Wed 25-Nov-15 15:56:04


Beaniebeemer Wed 25-Nov-15 15:57:26

Yes it's crap and it's getting worse.

wonkylegs Wed 25-Nov-15 16:00:14

I'm sorry to hear all these negative stories and I think it's a reflection on a very under-resources and overstretched system and how it can be a very different experience in different places.
I'm 16wks and have had fab care so far and when I had a late miscarraige Last year they were also fab. I am slightly complicated by being high risk and opting for booking in at a hospital at an adjacent trust so having to get cross trust communication (MW in one, consultant in another) but apart from the most miserable receptionist in the world (she was almost comical) and having a long wait for my 16wk scan, so far everybody has been brilliant and really nice. My consultant was very through and supportive and keeps pointing out she's there to support my decisions and my MW is lovely, talks a bit too much but is very nice. I have lots of scans due to being high risk and received all the appointments up to 36wks in the post this morning.
My first pregnancy (in another area) was also good.

AnotherTimeMaybe Wed 25-Nov-15 16:02:11

Sparklycat that's absolutely awful!!

OP unfortunately sometimes (not all) NHS is thought off doing us a favour hence the attitude... I did meet some lovely consultants on the NHS (mostly for baby issues ) and although polite etc they were either clueless or just can't be bothered or understand the parent's (or parent's to be) urgency.... Both my pregnancies I went private, with fantastic care - I had difficult labour so not regretting that a bit!
YANBU but all I can say is try to find a hospital which has good records for risky pregnancies, so at least you get the care you need!
Good luck x

AnneSansTete Wed 25-Nov-15 16:10:28

I'm currently pregnant with ds2. We put it off until we had saved enough to go private. I totally lost faith in NHS after my last birth - gave birth on antenatal ward as no beds in labour, drunk guy pulled back the curtains when I was stark naked and pushing all on my own as no midwives available and told me to stfu. If I had had any complications at all I would have been in real trouble as I didn't see one midwife/ doctor for my entire labour.

If I couldn't afford to have gone private this time I would have had a termination as I found the experience so traumatic.

VagueIdeas Wed 25-Nov-15 16:14:35

I was expecting to think you were unreasonable but actually that's appalling.

Littleelffriend Wed 25-Nov-15 16:35:01

Goodness, there's so many stories of bad experiences. I just feel like there's not much I can do about it. So far, mine is not a high risk pregnancy.
I'm in Aberdeen, (NE Scotland). I have had good experiences with eth NHS-when my Mum was dying of cancer her consultant/the nurses couldn't have been any better, I can't praise them highly enough.
I know that the NHS is extremely over stretched, which is why I feel bad complaining, but it's a "caring" profession. Allegedly.

sharonthewaspandthewineywall Wed 25-Nov-15 16:41:04

Ive had a shitty time this time also. Doctors just not turning up to clinic. Then when they do not even knowing what the main issues are which has led to me being consultant led. Booking appt the day before 12 week scan, being told my iron levels are fine then being told im very anaemic and need to start iron, my maternity unit being shut and nobody acually being told about this even the staff, well tell a lie they were given 6 days notice they had to move to a unit 45 minutes away to work. Its the begining of the end imo and although I work for the NHS myself my job will actually be commisioned by local authority when I come back off maternity leave so who knows what will happen then. Its very uncertain and sad times.

kinkytoes Wed 25-Nov-15 16:41:05

Sorry to hear about your bad experience but I wanted to hopefully reassure you about the loop diathermy as much as possible. I had one too and it didn't affect my pregnancy. Not the same as hearing it from a hcp I know, and everyone's different but wanted to mention it. I hope your care improves.

KatieLatie Wed 25-Nov-15 16:52:03

When I was pregnant, I freaked out - with MW care and the local hospital reputation - and opted for privare MW care and a private birth at a hospital 2 hours drive from home. I was very lucky to be able yo do it and don't regret it (or the cost) one bit...

The NHS is very very good at saving loves. Anything else tends to be a bit of a bumpy ride, but we are lucky to have it.

TownhouseMummy Wed 25-Nov-15 17:06:25

I had a miscarriage 2 weeks ago. When I called the hospital in the morning after the bleed, I was told no scanning facilities were available for a week and given no further advice. I was 11 weeks and did not even have a 12 week scan booked. Even my GP could not get a scan. So we paid for a private scan and discovered my 11 week pregnancy had actually failed at 6.5 weeks, and then I was given options (options I would not have had without a scan). I've had no scan since but have booked a private scan (the earliest was in 2 weeks) in case my hormones have not regulated by then as I do not trust that I will receive a scan on the nhs. Since we have discovered my husband's health insurance will cover ultrasounds and much more I will make use of this in any future pregnancy and not rely on the nhs.

Also, my "12 week appointment" appointment did not even arrive until I was 12.5 weeks (for a 13.5 week appointment) by which point I had miscarried. I had to call them this morning to inform them (I couldn't face calling any earlier).

Having said that, when my daughter was born with meningitis they were excellent and she made a swift recovery. Agree, excellent at saving lives.

Francoitalialan Wed 25-Nov-15 17:07:58

Is this a "bash the NHS day?"

Iammad Wed 25-Nov-15 18:48:12

I've had both good and bad from the nhs, my last pregnancy I had fantastic care.
My youngest dd was awful, I had pre eclampsia and needed to be induced, they left me in a side room on my own all day and even had the cheek to write they had done obs in my notes when they hadn't!
This pregnancy has been hit and miss,they say one thing and white another in my notes.
Like I was on the ctg (having BP series done) and the midwife wasn't happy with baby as very sleepy so said I'll put the ctg paper in your notes (I was seeing consultant stright after).
But she had wrote in my notes saying baby active!
Also I told the consultant I wasn't happy with babys movements and I was told 'baby messuerments (funded height) are ok so don't worry' wtf!

Katinkka Wed 25-Nov-15 19:57:06

It's utter shit. Thank God for private healthcare.

Fratelli Thu 26-Nov-15 08:38:33

That sounds awful. I've had both good and bad experiences. In one hospital I was having a suspected miscarriage. I got told "why have you come in, we can't scan you til monday, if you're having a miscarriage we can't do anything about it so just go home". It was awful and I did lose the baby.

However when I gave birth to my rainbow I had excellent treatment whilst in labour and good aftercare. The community midwife during my pregnancy left much to be desired though. I asked if there were things I should or shouldn't be doing and she said no!

Tiredemma Thu 26-Nov-15 08:44:10

AS a nurse in the NHS I have to agree.

Its utter shit

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