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Eastbourne MLU, Conquest or RSCH in Bton?

(16 Posts)
Spink Fri 13-Jan-17 21:17:56

I'm trying to weigh up where to book in to... & I've plenty of time to decide! I'd also be up for a home birth.

I've two children, both born at RSCH (lived v close to it then). Both v straightforward pgs & labour initially too, but both ended with medical input (1st needed ventouse/ prep for emergency C sec which I thankfully avoided, 2nd had breathing probs so needed SCBU.) So with both I would've needed transfer if I'd been at a MLU..

It would be good to hear your experiences of these lovely Sussex birthing places smile

tinkitonki Fri 13-Jan-17 21:43:20

What's the journey like from where you live now to all of those? That would be a big consideration for me.
I've had 2 at RSCH, and I'm booked in for a home birth through Brighton and Hove this time but I'd be happy to transfer in to Brighton if I need to.
What about PRH or is that too far for you?

Spink Sat 14-Jan-17 08:14:23

Hello tinkitonki, we're equidistant from Eastbourne & Bton; about 20 mins to each. PRH would be about 45. The midwife said there's a way of making sure that if I went to the MLU & needed transfer they could send me to RSCH rather than Conquest but I think I might prefer starting off at RSCH & transfer not being an issue..

On the other hand, at the MLU it is much less busy & the rooms are singles, so prob more restful than RSCH postnatally.

& apparently transfers are less likely with 2nd + babies so there's a good chance it wouldn't be an issue.

Are your dcs going to be around at home for the birth? Mine really want to be but dh isn't up for that!

theothercatpurred Sat 14-Jan-17 08:27:18

If it were me I'd avoid the MLU purely because if you need to transfer it'd mean a trip down the A27 to the Conquest while in labour which must be awful.

Plus IIRC if you did find you needed an epidural you just can't have one (unless you transfer).

Spink Sat 14-Jan-17 08:33:04

Hi cat, the mw reckons they could transfer to Brighton instead of Conquest but it would still be a trip down the A27.

I luckily haven't needed epidural for my other 2, but have appreciated knowing it's an option.. so that's a good point.

It's been 8 years since I was last at RSCH so maybe it's changed, but the postnatal ward was v busy both times I was there & so the care was very stretched.

Muddlingalongalone Sat 14-Jan-17 08:38:07

Not answering your question at all but have you considered the birthing centre in Crowborough?? Sil has had both children there and can't speak highly enough for the place if you are likely to have low risk births.

theothercatpurred Sat 14-Jan-17 08:40:15

It's a difficult decision isn't it. They should never have cut maternity services at Eastbourne IMO. It's a horrible decision for mothers to be to have to take.

theothercatpurred Sat 14-Jan-17 08:42:00

Can you visit RSCH? I remember for my first birth (not in Sussex) the anti natal classes at the hospital included a tour of the ward. Do they do something similar?

Spink Sat 14-Jan-17 08:42:09

Hello muddling,
Crowborough looks lovely but it's a 45-60 min drive for us so that takes it off the list 😬

Spink Sat 14-Jan-17 08:47:51

They don't do visits any more cat! You can watch a virtual tour on the website which doesn't really give a sense of it!

I'd like to hear some first hand experiences I think!

Though I should stop thinking about it - time will tell & if later on I become higher risk the decision will be made for me anyway! I'm still 1st trimester so far too early to plan- it was my mw asking where i want to be booked that made me realise the options..

tinkitonki Sat 14-Jan-17 11:34:12

Spink, we are planning that they will be around, I'm hoping that like with the other 2 this one will be born early hours of the morning so they will be in bed asleep.
However, if it's daytime it's more problematic as we will be juggling school/nursery runs etc so have a list of people we can call if needs be to collect them and swoop them away if needed.

We have also considered what we do if I need to transfer in or if the kids wake up, get scared, whatever and in that instance my partner will leave me with the midwives (they send 2 for home births) and deal with the children as I really don't want anyone in the house while I give birth, so there is an outside chance my partner may not be there for the actual birth but we are ok with that.

I can tell you that RSCH post natal is very busy but then they all are. However, the care from the midwives is second to none and they have recently changed the rules so partners can stay overnight so you would have yours on hand to help you, though of course that does make the ward feel more crowded.

You are completely right the transfer rates for second or more babies are significantly lower so I wouldn't worry too much about that, take a look at the birthplace study, loads of stats there.
In your case I would look again at homebirth, takes all the stress out of the situation and have a plan b to transfer in to Brighton if required, Conquest is very stretched too post natal (it's the poor relation regards maternity care) and I always think better the devil you know.

Spink Sat 14-Jan-17 12:14:09

That's really helpful tinki, if we can get a decent childcare plan then home birth would be the most relaxed. We've no family anywhere near and our closest friends are in London but I guess we have time to look at who could help.

When we lived in Bton we were 2 mins from the hospital & that meant it felt possible to stay at home much longer than if we'd had 20 mins in the car. The idea of not having to go anywhere at all is lovely..

tinkitonki Sat 14-Jan-17 13:26:22

That's what swung home birth for me, my own space to potter in and my own bath and bed afterwards!

Crunchyside Mon 13-Mar-17 18:56:55

Have you decided yet OP? (Assuming you haven't had the baby already) I'm due in June and just came across this thread as I'm also in the area. Can't decide between EMU (10 mins away), Conquest (about 30 mins away) and home birth!

My first one I transferred from EMU to Conquest in 2014 and it was an awful experience but I think things have changed a bit since then.

SumAndSubstance Wed 15-Mar-17 09:53:06

I had my DS at the Conquest in 2012 and it was horrendous. As you say, things may well have changed since then though...!

Spink Wed 15-Mar-17 21:08:44

Hello! I've only just seen your posts blush I'm still pregnant! But the choice has been taken out of my hands as my Cons wants me to be where there are NICU facilities, & RSCH is closest for that.
I wish you well with your June baby smile

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