Bad Experience at The Lindo Wing(41 Posts)
Hi, just wanting to vent really and warn any others who might be trying to decide where to give birth. Just had a bad experience at the Lindo Wing. DC is fine and healthy which is of course the most important thing so I know that these are are first world problems!!! Just wanting to get it off my chest and help others who might be trying to decide.
So for close to £20k, First of all I didn't get to the room until 8pm at night as the 'room wasn't ready" and it seems they took over 4 hours to get it ready. So I was stuck in the delivery room alone for hours and hours after birth until 8pm at night.
Then when I did get the room, the TV didn’t work at all. Hardly the 'deluxe' package we were paying for.
One MW during delivery was wonderful, but after the delivery barely saw a nurse or a MW, it was all really grumpy, sullen agency care workers, shift workers and ‘healthcare assistants’. They took variously 2-4 hours to do anything - get water, get medicine. It took an extra 4 hours to take out my catheter as the lady ‘forgot’. They were very quick with one thing though, when they needed some extra forms filled out for payment, they miraculously were there straight away! All night long the buzzer was going off (the buzzer you call for help) and there was never enough people to help, sometimes the buzzer would be going for 20 mins, waking everyone else up too.A few times it took an hour for someone to come to help you.
On booking we were promised a lactation consultant and someone to help establish breastfeeding. Turns out no such person exists! The random assistants and agency workers gave few bits of advice but nobody who actually knew what they were doing. Really disappointing.
My bed was a really really old one and the controls for it nowhere near reachable so every time I needed to shift position or move the bed i had to call the button to get help to move the bed - they would often take up to 30 mins to come and help. And of course I didn't want to call them to help with such a minor thing but I had to as I had an EMCS so I wasn’t very mobile, couldn’t reach the water bottle or pour the water myself and everytime the catering staff came in they would leave the tray out of reach so i would have to call someone to get whatever it was within my grasp or pour some water which they did grumpily. Some of the staff were lovely but the majority grumpy and overworked.
The room had peeling wallpaper, shoddy curtains that wouldn’t close, again, first world problems again but not what you expect for £20k package.The fruit plate was completely unripe and tasted either sour or of nothing.The food was barely edible.
The final straw was when it came to check out and they told me I had to be gone by midday or they would charge by the hour for every hour over .Despite not having gotten into the room at 8pm when I 'checked in'. So we had to pay for 3 full days/nights even though was only in the room for 2.5 days/nights. You really felt like you were in a factory.
Hope this helps someone make the right choice or nudges the Lindo Wing to sort themselves out and give people what they are paying for!
Did you try to resolve your complaints with the hospital?
The two people I know who had DC1 at The Lindo Wing both elected to have DC2 elsewhere! (Portland and C&W).
Be thankful you gave birth in a hospital and not a field
Oh for goodness sake, if she'd just paid 20k for a car that turned out to be shit would you say "be thankful you have a car and not a horse and cart"!? When you're paying a lot of money for a service and it falls short of your expectations you're allowed to be annoyed.
Having experienced both private (expensive!) & public (free) hospitals (not for maternity) I can say that the public was far superior. And my operation there much better too! The private hospital was new & shiny, but all I got really was a nice dessert with my dinner... Would have preferred a successful operation for the money I spent. NHS since then!
What was the hospital'so response to your complaints?
I hope you've got some of the money back.
It sounds as if you had a horrible time.
Basically, you're not Kate Middleton - so they didn't care. I'd be interested to know if anyone had a similar experience at the Portland.
But OP never would have given birth in a field! She would have given birth in an NHS hospital, probably just a different wing at St Mary's where yes you have to put up with shoddy curtains and grumpy staff but you haven't paid £20K for the privilege. The doctors are the same. The medical care is the same. You are paying a huge premium for a much better level of service. You are paying to guarantee nice food and people who smile at you, otherwise what's the point? If I was OP I'd be miffed too. And quite frankly putting food and water out of reach for a mother who'd had a c-section would be poor care in an NHS ward too.
I think it's probably similar at most. I remember begging my dh to get me a private room for post delivery 'this time' after every one (paying the full ante natal package is properly wasting money but some better aftercare would be worth it) but the midwives on the NHS ward every time told me it would be worse on the other side and, after hearing the experiences of friends who paid out I'm v glad I didn't. If you want someone/something useful get a doula!
Six years ago when I did my research C&W had a better feel to it. I liked the Portland too but I wanted to be attached to a hospital in case anything went wrong.
We ended staying in America and I had a good experience for the first two. My third was so so with me having to start stamping my feet to get a nipple shield and pain killers. The young nurse took her sweet time not understanding that no I couldn't not wait until morning and no DH couldn't run out and buy a nipple shield because you can't find the key to the cupboard. An older nurse took over and was apologetic though. Told me after that they were giving me the crap nurses as I was a third time parent so assumed I needed minimal help.
Thanks for your comments (mostly!), I haven't made a complaint yet but I will. Not expecting anything from it and i'm sure they will make the usual wriggle out comments.
But yes GOASTT is right - thank you Goastt! if you choose to pay for a supposedly ''high quality' service then you just expect to get it. That's all.
As I said, first world problems and we are so blessed that the baby is perfect and well. Just my point is we might as well have not have paid anything for the service we got. So I was trying to help other mothers who might be in the same situation as us to decide!
I had a pretty good experience with 3 of mine at the Kensington wing C&W. personally I wouldn't recommend their MW led service unless it has changed a lot (this particular experience was rather a long time ago being the first).
On all occasions staff were responsive and I was delayed checking out a couple of times as the paediatricians were busy with emergencies and I was never charged more.
I have to say I never minded being in the labour suite or paid much attention to when I was moved (what's the difference between 1 private room and another?) although I don't recall any particular delays.
You need to make a formal complaint and request a rebate of some of the charges.
The NHS has its faults but at least you don't get a huge bill.
Goodness me, 20k!! You would have had better care through the NHS.
Was it a midwife or consultant led service OP? I'm guessing midwife from your original post but not sure?
20k is consultant led surely. Midwives still attend to you - until you're actually in the second stage of Labour the doctor just pops in and out as needed/to advise.
Present them with a realistic calculation for rebate on services you didn't get (there needs to be some logic behind this) when you complain.
Good thing you've written it all down here but try to get more of the detail in writing to them re times and descriptions of staff etc.
I think you should complain and take it further. Your care fell short of what you were paying for.
Sounds very much like my experience of having a c-section at St Mary's (other than the private room). But I didn't pay 20k. I would definitely complain. Did you at least have your own /chosen consultant doing the section? When I was went back to have my stitches checked there was a lot of talk among the midwives about which consultants did the best scars. But again mine (done by quite a junior doctor) healed very well and wasn't large
unlike the new one from two weeks ago.
Definitely complain in writing! They are providing a premium service and they need to differentiate themselves from the NHS.
I have had three at the Kensington Wing and have had great service each time, and the rooms have always been lovely (hospital rooms obv, but you don't go there for Frette linens and a minibar..).
Checking out always seems to be delayed but I have never been charged for this and in fact with #1, we couldn't be discharged until some blood results came back for the baby and the midwives missed the last courier in the afternoon so they didn't charge us for that night (so we paid for three instead of four).
Most of your £20k would have gone on the medical costs related to your C-section... but there would have been enough left over to provide decent care which it sounds like they didn't.
Don't mention the bit about the taste of the fruit though - that's going to make you sound like Marie-Antoinette and detract from your valid points about unanswered call bells and lack of support.
Is there a reason you went private rather than NHS? I'm just
nosy wondering if you weren't eligible for NHS care or something.
It always pays to be nice to the staff, whether that goes against the grain or not.
You may think this is a coincidence, but I tend not to treat people like servants and this has never happened to me.
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