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Countess of Chester - Anyone given birth there recently

(11 Posts)
WhyOWhyWouldYou Tue 05-Aug-14 21:20:19

Ok, so I'm booked at Countess of Chester and I've just watched the video they tell you to watch and two things in it have panicked me. I would really appreciate it if anyone who has given birth there recently can tell me if the things that are panicking me are even relevant now or if they have changed.

1) It says visiting times are strictly adhered too - please, please tell me they do not kick partners out straight after birth if its outside visiting hours!

2) It also said that after delivery, when you are transferred to labour ward that its 3-5 bed wards (I thought pretty much all hospitals had only private rooms post labour!!) And that there are some private rooms but you have to pay?!?! Is this really right? I cannot be on a ward, its making my anxiety go through the roof at the thought of it.

My last labour was at Arrowe Park (lived right by it then), they had all private rooms and although technically visiting times for partners were 9-9 and for others less they didn't bat a eyelid at my mom and partner being there well outside of those times.

LadyRubyPenhaligon Tue 05-Aug-14 21:44:08

Yes it is all true. Really not that far to arrowe from chester, would you consider going there again? It is highly regarded throughout the region. The countess on the other hand has some catching up to do. Just my opinion though, am sure you'll get responses that are more positive than mine.

WhyOWhyWouldYou Tue 05-Aug-14 22:10:49


I could book back at Arrowe again (I am only half way between the two but just about come under Chester area rather than APH) but it would mean having community midwives from Chester and Consultant appointments at APH. I'm slightly reluctant to do that because with my son I actually moved 3 weeks before he was born from staff accommodation at APH to where I live now just inside Chester hospitals area and it caused confusion and there were conflicting things being said by both of them.

Plus I do like the staff at Chester, they seem really nice (I had a couple of bad ones at APH).

I just cant believe that Maternity wards aren't pretty much all like APH now - I really thought they were. I really don't know what to do now. I just cannot do multiple bedded wards rather than private rooms.

Do you know how many private rooms there are and how much they charge for them? Plus the idea of hubby being kicked out straight away is hell - wonder if they would do that if you were paying for a private room?

LadyRubyPenhaligon Tue 05-Aug-14 22:36:05

I think there are at least 4 private rooms possibly more. Ring the ward and ask all your questions directly?? It would be anonymous. One thing occurred to me are you or dh/dp staff there? As that may lend some weight towards getting your own room. As far as midwives go I think you can book through the one to one service offered at arrowe park and see the same midwife before and after, think but not sure that they are a private midwife service with an nhs contract and they do travel further than the boundary. Your other option if being in a bay of beds is to go straight gone from the delivery ward if that's possible.

rallytog1 Wed 06-Aug-14 14:05:28

I gave birth there 15 months ago.

They were VERY flexible on visiting hours. DH was there pretty much all day every day I was in (over a week) and they let him stay over a couple of nights too.

I was in a private room but never got billed for it. I just insisted on one when I went up to the ward after dd was born. There wasn't one available straight away, but they moved me to one as soon as it became available.

The shared ward rooms are fine and they seem to spread people out as much as possible, so everyone gets as much privacy as possible.

The midwives there are also fantastic. I was in for a long time so met a lot of them, and they were all wonderful. You will be in good hands.

rallytog1 Wed 06-Aug-14 14:08:10

Ps I think the private rooms are supposed to be £45 a night. I world have happily paid that, as it would have been worth every penny.

Feel free to pm me if you want to ask anything else!

UriGeller Wed 06-Aug-14 14:18:13

I was on a 5 bed ward (for 4 nights!) at the COCH but only two other beds were ever occupied. I was told the first night is always on the ward so they can keep an eye on your post operative care. I had the option for a private room but honestly, i preferred to be where I could collar a nurse or healthcare worker as they passed.

Of course if youre a straight forward delivery then you don't even have to spend a night there.

My DP was there almost constantly. I also read about the strict visiting hours but partners are usually exempt. The staff are lovely and caring and of course are well aware of the importance for dads/partners to be there.

WhyOWhyWouldYou Wed 06-Aug-14 15:13:01

Thats all.

lady - dh works at APH. We arent originally from around here (born and raised further south) and didnt actually know the house we bought was in chester hospitals area until i told APH of my address change and they told me i would have to use chester community midwives but could choose whether to still give birth there or move to chester. As it was only 2 weeks from my due date (ds was a week late) and i didnt even know how to get to chester hospital, never mind anything about it i decided to still give birth at APH. But i did end up with a lot of conflicting information because chester and APH do things differently.

WhyOWhyWouldYou Wed 06-Aug-14 15:26:08

Rally & Uri - im glad youve both had positive experiences and that they werent strict about the visiting hours. Thats quite reassuring. rally Its also reassuring that when you insisted on one they did give you one free.

The issue with wards is i dont feel safe - i know its irrational but it doesnt stop it from being terrifying and anxiety inducing for me.

I am hoping for a straight forward delivery but im high risk for a number of things. So can see myself being stuck in. If things go well i plan to discharge myself as soon as humanly possible but even then it depends on time of day/night i actually give birth - obviously if i give birth at 11pm they are not going to discharge me until following morning at the earliest.

Hubby was going to speak to midwives today for me, so ill see what he says when he gets in from work.

WhyOWhyWouldYou Wed 06-Aug-14 15:30:06

* when you insited on a private room , they did give you one for free.

rallytog1 Wed 06-Aug-14 16:47:35

My advice is to tell them as early as possible once you're in that you want a private room. You can't book them in advance but I told both midwives who looked after me during labour/birth and the ones in recovery with me after my other operation (my birth was actually a bit of a horror story, but that is no reflection on the midwives at the Countess!).

Obviously they can't keep a room open for you indefinitely, but I know they did call up ahead to the ward before they took me up. There wasn't a room available at that point but they knew I wanted one and told me I would be moved as soon as possible. I had to be on the main ward for about 3 hours and just kept asking everyone when I could get my own room. Maybe they moved me to shut me up!

I think if they know you're anxious about it and you're nice/realistic in how you ask, they're happy to try to help you as much as they can.

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