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St. Mary’s Paddington v UCH(8 Posts)
Does anyone have recent experiences of St.Mary’s in Paddington versus UCH for pregnancy care and labour/c-sections? I’m early on (6 weeks) and just self-referring so don’t know what sort of care I will need. Some have said that St. Mary’s is good because you could choose to transfer to the private Lindo wing later down the line (and stay with the same doctor(s)) but all the things I have read about UCH seem to be really positive (and I have also read that the St Mary’s labour ward is ancient and not that clean, but those posts seem quite old!)
Any thoughts appreciated!
Also interested in this as live in London. I haven't found anything definitive one way or another about the big hospitals near(ish) to me.
Don’t have any experience of St Mary’s but had both mine at UCH despite being out of area. I self referred. No questions asked. Really positive experience both times. My personal opinion is that it is a world class hospital and you have access to the best of the best doctors if you should end up needing them - doctors that people pay an arm and a leg for at the Portland etc. My big thing was it was CLEAN. This was important for me. Everything was clean. Its a relatively new facility and it shows. I also ended up in transitional care with my first baby which is the halfway house when your baby is premature or needs extra help but not enough to need to be in the NICU. The care was brilliant.
They also let me have an epidural even though I was fully dilated - so many hospitals would have refused this and I will love them forever for this alone!!
Second baby was planned c section as baby was breach. Again a hugely positive experience but in a different way.
I felt there was always someone on hand to ask for help and it never felt understaffed despite being super busy.
I have had both my babies at UCH and agree with the pp. It is world class, if something goes wrong, it’s where you want to be. People travel from all over the country with complicated pregnancies to have their antinatal care there; their experience and expertise is second to none. So for a straight forward pregnancy you are in the best of hands. I had one fairly dramatic theatre forceps birth, and one very very fast (as in 20 mins after arriving st the hospital) straight forward birth. They were brilliant both times, especially the forceps birth - I never felt anything other than complete confidence in them, even when things were getting a bit scary. Post natal at st marys is hot and old and cramped, that put me off more than anything, despite it being closer to us. UCH is modern and airy. It is very very busy though so you can wait quite a while for appointments, but just take a book and a snack!
Should add, I had mine in 2015 and 2017 so relatively recently. My sil had her baby at UCH on Friday - again v positive experience.
I had both mine at St Mary's but that was 9 and 12 years ago. My youngest was born in the midwife led birthing unit which was brand new then and amazing. You get your own private room after the birth, with a bathroom, & you can stay the night with your partner and baby. I don't know if there is an equivalent at UCH. I don't know whether things have changed now but I found the whole visiting hours on the ante and post natal wards a bit draconian at St Mary's. I stayed a couple of nights with my first baby (one night before because I was induced, one night after the birth) and remember being really upset at my other half being sent home at 8pm (obviously not while I was actually in labour). While the midwife who delivered my first was lovely the nurses on duty in the ante and post natal wards couldn't have been less friendly and welcoming. Good luck wherever you choose!
Re visiting hours at UCH - we were in for 8 days with first baby and 3 for second baby (2016/2018) and husband was allowed to stay 24/7 on both occasions. I believe this is standard there and not exceptional.
Thanks everyone - I have chosen UCH so it’s good to see all of the positive comments!
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