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East Surrey hospital

(43 Posts)
Mumpbump Wed 22-Aug-07 12:28:57

Has anyone else heard that East Surrey does not have the capacity to cater for all the pregnant women at the moment? I heard they are sending people to other hospitals - any idea which hospitals they would be?

Thanks...

LIZS Wed 22-Aug-07 12:42:46

Not heard this specifically but there has bene an ongong issue with low staffing(and funding) levels over the past 10 or so years, not helped by closure of Crawley. At a guess they would use Mayday,Croydon or Royal Surrey, Guildford or possibly the one in Haywards Heath currently under threat of downgrading . Try contacting the Reigate NCT , they may well know.

Mumpbump Wed 22-Aug-07 12:44:09

I heard that the situation was due to taking on Crawley's load. Thanks for the suggestion. Good idea!

Thelittlesoldiersmummy Wed 22-Aug-07 20:17:07

Hope this helps but I suppose it depends what hospital they have a link with

Nearby maternity units.

Epsom General Hospital 9 Miles

St Helier Hospital, Carshalton 11 Miles

Mayday Hospital, Croydon 12 miles

Princess Royal University Hospital, Orpington 14 Miles

SleeplessInTheStaceym11House Wed 22-Aug-07 20:22:02

more than likely mayday, its a good hospital so if it is dont panic (no not a good hospital but good maternity unit) have a home from home place, its great!!

had dd there on labour ward and had ds in home from home place twas good!!

good luck!

barbamama Thu 23-Aug-07 21:29:30

I am going to E Surrey and also v worried about this. I went on the tour a few weeks ago and somebody asked the person doing the tour whether it was true that the unit had had to close. Apparently about 4 weeks prior to that it had had to close - she said this was the only time. She wouldn't comitt to which hospitals you would be sent to if it happens again and said you would phone up and be told which were accepting their patients. I have heard that Epsom and St Helier are most likely. Personaly I will have a homebirth before I go to Mayday (even though I am not supported in having one due to problems in previous pg).

I went for an appointment a couple of weeks ago on a Friday afternoon and they were so full that the Antenatal Day Unit was being run out of the Antenatal Clinic because their beds were all in use with labouring women. And when I arrived there was a lady being put in an ambulance with a very very newborn baby - I asked about it and they said they were transferring as many people as possible home as early as possible (which actually is fine by me if all is ok).

I had to go to the Antenatal Day Unit again yesterday afternoon and it has now actually been moved to another building for a few months to "free up space in the main hospital because it is so busy" so hopefully this will help. When it closed at 5 I got moved to the Delivery Ward for further monitoring and it didn't seem too busy.

It is a worry but sounds like they have recognised the problem and are trying to do something about it. Going to be luck of the draw I think.

barbamama Thu 23-Aug-07 21:31:10

I also asked the mw last night why they were so busy and she said that there were an uncharacteristically large number of bookings in January which were now all coming in - she made noises about extra Crawley women. Hmmmm.

mumclaire Thu 23-Aug-07 21:58:21

I had dd at East Surrey 18mths ago - my friend gave birth 1 week before and when I went in to see her and new baby and it was packed - they made all sorts of comments like 'don't go into labour now - we don't have the room' It threw me into to complete panic... in the end it was fine....
I think there are times when they get very busy and then all of a sudden its quiet - unfortunately cos its a maternity unit there's not a lot of predictable stuff! What i'm saying is please don't worry about - IF there is a problem then you will deal with it at the time but there is not much you can do about it at the mo. hth

TheDuchessOfNorksBride Thu 23-Aug-07 22:02:45

Come to Crowborough Birthing Centre. It's LOVELY!

Mumpbump Fri 24-Aug-07 11:46:20

If I booked into Crowborough, what would the closest hospital be in case of complications, do you know?

I am also now considering a home birth with perhaps a trainee doula/independent m/w for extra support.

God this is making me nervous... Especially after your posts, barbamama. We haven't bothered with a tour this time since we had ds in East Surrey.

Mumpbump Fri 24-Aug-07 11:48:17

One other thing, Barbamama - I do remember when I first rang up about my booking-in appointment, the doctor's surgery didn't have one for ages. Fortunately, I was very quick of the mark, but they did comment that they seemed to be unusually busy at that time. And my doctor's surgery is in Woodlands Road, Redhill so can't be booking in women from Crawley!

dogbert Fri 24-Aug-07 11:56:11

Nearest hospital to Crowborough (CBC) would be Pembury at Tunbridge Wells or Haywards Heath. If it's a non-urgent transfer you can request where you're sent, if it's an emergency they'll get you to the nearest available. You can transfer back to CBC though - so if you start at CBC, go and have a C-section at Haywards Heath, you can then ask to go back to CBC for recuperation, b/f support, private rooms etc.

dogbert Fri 24-Aug-07 12:00:21

And if you do have a baby in a busy hospital and they ask you to go home early, don't worry. Obviously if you're in a lot of pain then you can refuse to be moved!

I was in less than 48hrs with my 1st DC, but only 6 hours with my 2nd. Your midwife will visit you daily for at least a week and they're always on the end of the phone if anything happens that you need advice on.

(And my 3rd was homebirth. Lovely!).

Mumpbump Fri 24-Aug-07 12:20:08

CBC might be a good compromise - dh is very nervous about home birth whilst as mentioned, I am very nervous about hospital birth, given the apparently overstretched resources of East Surrey...

barbamama Fri 24-Aug-07 14:17:23

I think it will just be luck of the draw on the day. As I said, it didn't seem that busy the other night? TBH, my first birth was in a London hospital and was hell on earth and they really couldn't be that bad I don't think if they tried and I am also hoping to be in and out within 6 hours too so am hoping that is not long enough for it to be problematic and that E Surrey will be the lesser of two evils. I too thought about CBC but, again from last experience and already having a toddler that needs childcare, the great thing about E Surrey is we are about 8 mins drive away which is very appealing. I think CBC would be 45 mins or so. I was also going to go to the private birth centre in Tooting but again thought is it worth it if I am only there for 6 hours? (please, please no complications this time) What is the secret of getting in and out so quickly by the way? I know you have to have no complications, stitches, forceps etc but assuming that do you just have to hassle them to book your 24 hour paed check before you go?

Mumpbump my due date is next Saturday and I think I am going to just plough ahead with E Surrey and hope for the best so I will let you know how it goes. I would have a home birth if I could but strongly advised against it blah blah becasue of problem last time. Next time I will though! If you have no complications /issues would that be something to consider? Is it your first? Bit scary if so I guess. But then you are very close to the hospital if needed.

barbamama Fri 24-Aug-07 14:23:38

Sorry Mumpbump I've just remembered you said you had ds at E Surrey so it can't be your first. How was it? If it was fine last time I'm sure it will be ok again? I have a fair few friends who have given birth there (most first in Mayday then switched to E Surrey for second) and they have all said it was fine? Also when are you due? Sounds like Aug / Sept may be a statistical blip for them so maybe if you can miss that bit would be ok? (please, please don't let me be kidding myself!)

Mumpbump Fri 24-Aug-07 14:36:58

That's what my mum said, that perhaps it was a blip which would be over by 1 October - my EDD.

East Surrey was really good last time. I am very anti-hospitals, but ds was induced because of concerns about his growth rate so I didn't have the option of a home birth. I would be quite happy to end up there again, provided I actually get a labour room! I remember being left on the induction ward for a bit last time so they might have been equally busy, but as ds was my first (and I hadn't discovered MN) I would probably have been oblivious to any capacity problems.

I hope that your labour is okay. I know one of our acquaintances was told to go to the hospital as late as possible as it's then much harder for them to send you to another one.

The other thing I'm thinking of is perhaps getting a doula for the home birth option which might make dh feel a bit happier... I shall look out for your birth announcement and hope that it refers to empty beds and corridors!!!

imasecretlemonadedrinker Fri 24-Aug-07 14:39:20

East Surrey has now had to take on Princess Royal (H Heath) maternoty patients as the mat unit has closed down. However, i did read in the paper that they are re-opening and re-vamping the mat unit at Crawley and ALL ante-natal will be there and only deliveries at ES.

Mumpbump Fri 24-Aug-07 14:42:51

That's interesting - any idea of the time-scale for Crawley re-opening?

Mumpbump Fri 24-Aug-07 14:54:40

SLD - has the maternity unit at PRH actually closed down? I had only heard that it was under threat and can't find anything in a google search confirming that it has now been shut.

mumclaire Fri 24-Aug-07 19:26:03

Hmm didn't know about them re-opening Crawley - was advised to get my scans done there as its not as busy as ES - so couple of weeks ago had my 12 week scan - the place was empty - quite literally we didn't see anyone until we found the scan reception and even then we were the only people in the waiting room - no-one before and no-one after us... how bizarre that they're piling everything onto ES and closing everything else down...

LIZS Fri 24-Aug-07 19:27:10

I thought HH was being downgraded rather than closed and it hadn't happened yet.

imasecretlemonadedrinker Sat 25-Aug-07 10:17:31

I will try and find the article and post it on here. That is, of course, assuming DH has recycled it!!!

It def said Crawley were taking on all the ante-natal from PRH and ESH. I remember when I went to Crawley for my Ante-natal the MW said they were being re-vamped and a whole floor was going to be dedicated to ante-natal. I read it in a WEST Sussex action paper that comes free trhough teh door. i think it done by the council.

Will let you all know if i find it.

Mumpbump Tue 28-Aug-07 11:57:58

Just to let you all know that I heard over the weekend from someone who is expecting their baby in two weeks and works at East Surrey that the hospitals to which we might be transferred are in fact Epsom, Brighton or Mayday.

By way of an update on ME (!), I am now looking at a home birth with independent midwives... I think the cost is likely to be prohibitive, but they said as I was so close to my EDD and don't want any postnatal care, they would see if they could do a discounted rate. Hope so! Otherwise, it's an NHS home birth. Think dh has come around to thinking it's the lesser of the two evils, so to speak...

barbamama Tue 28-Aug-07 13:49:54

Brighton!!! Are they having a laugh?

barbamama Tue 28-Aug-07 13:52:01

Did she give any indication as to how likely it is or whether they are still so busy?

My friend is 2 days overdue now and definitely going to E Surrey so will let you know how she gets on.

Mumpbump Tue 28-Aug-07 14:09:16

No - she said that it was basically going to be the luck of the draw. Can't remember whether I mentioned before that she and her partner were told to go in as late as possible as that should apparently reduce the chance of her being sent elsewhere. The only thing is that if EVERYONE goes in as late as possible, that in itself might cause problems...

librarianmummy Tue 28-Aug-07 14:10:51

I had my baby in East Surrey in January and as I recall they did close the unit down to incoming patients just after I had my dd. They also wanted yo send me home 3 hours after delivery which I wasn't ready for as this was my first. I put my foot down and did get a bed. The post natal care was a bit average but still worth going there as the midwives were really good during labour which after all the most important bit.

barbamama Tue 28-Aug-07 16:10:57

Thnaks that's good to know. I am on my second so far more interested in the midwives for the birth bit and am more than happy to go home after 3 hours all being well. I think all postnatal care is average at best these days from what I can tell! As long as it is not downright dangerous like it was for me last time (different hospital).... I don't intend to hang around so good to hear the midwives were good.

Regarding going in late I don't understand (despite being second time!) when you go anyway or how the hell you judge it! Last time they were really sceptical becasue I could talk through the contractions on the phone to them but when I got there i was 5 cm - is this late enough? Do they just mean don't phone until the contractions ahve been going ofr a while?

Mumpbump Tue 28-Aug-07 16:38:50

Good question - no idea!! Ds was induced so I have no inkling of what natural/early labour feels like! I guess you just hold on until you feel like you can't go any longer without medical pain relief, perhaps.

barbamama Wed 29-Aug-07 19:44:30

Latest East Surrey spy report: there again today and wasn't very busy. Friend there yesterday, same. Overheard them saying was very busy 2 weeks ago but had settled down now.

barbamama Wed 29-Aug-07 19:46:58

Asked when to phone to come in and they said when you feel like you need to as is getting too much. 5 mins apart just a guideline.

Also, community midwife said the closure incident was becasue special care was full so head peadtritician (sp?) closed mat unit as didn't want any more women delivering in case babies needed special care. Not that that helps but interesting to hear.

mumclaire Wed 29-Aug-07 22:38:11

Sorry - but had to laugh at them saying not to come in until pain is unbearable... btw can't fault care I had once I actually got into delivery suite and I was exceptional BUT have to share when I had dd1 (at esh)- I had been having contractions for about 12 hours when got stronger more painful and quicker rang up - they said come in went in - bright red in face contractions every 5mins - examined me - not even dialated shock. Sent me home with appointment for next morning - had painful night went in at 9am - women takes one look at me and says ooh quick you're in labour!! then examines me looks disappointed and says not even dialated!! shockshock by now can't even move comfortably so what do they do give me a couple of paracetomol and send me down the restaurant!!!! Ended up with me sitting on the floor outside antenatal day unit in floods of tears trying to control strong contractions with paracetomol and breathing while dh flapping about trying to get someone to help!! Eventually got admitted onto maternity ward at 5pm and once they were monitoring me concluded dd was in distress hmm!! Eventually had a emergency c-section at 3.30 the next morning...

barbamama Thu 30-Aug-07 11:40:50

I know, it's so subjective isn't it. Just got back from antenatal day unit again (not busy, delivery ward average apparently) and this time the mw said once you're having 3 painful contractions lasting a good minute or so in 10 minutes - or just phone when you think you need it and come into be checked. I have to say the midwives I've met over the last few days seem to be very good - way better than last time in London hospital.

Mumpbump Thu 30-Aug-07 11:58:43

Well, having checked out the independent m/w option, they said they could do the birth and postnatal for £2,000 shock And the care I had last time with ds was really good - couldn't fault it - it's only me being worried about the lack of resources! So have decided to stick with NHS homebirth and go into East Surrey if the sh*t hits the fan!!

Pleased to hear things are a bit quieter though...

barbamama Thu 30-Aug-07 15:10:44

Sounds like a good plan - I'll keep you posted on my daily ESH spy runs.

Mumpbump Fri 31-Aug-07 11:06:36

Had my m/w appointment yesterday and she said the reason East Surrey had had to close was because there was no more room in the Special Care unit, not because of lack of beds or midwives to deal with women in labour. But she did say they had had to close three times recently, but didn't say over what period she was talking.

ghosty Fri 31-Aug-07 11:23:38

Well, how reassuring that things haven't improved since I had DS nearly 8 years ago hmm
I had a c/s and was squished into a 6 bed ward with 8 other women (all recovering from c/s's) because they had all been transferred from the Crawley unit.

barbamama Sun 02-Sep-07 14:05:03

ESH update - we had our baby boy there this morning. Predictably, after an apparently really quiet week it was very busy - we got the last room. But everything went smoothly and the midwives were excellent. Only noticable effect was we had to wait an hour or so when we got there to get the room but once we were in and established we were fine. Baby was born at 4.22 and we left at 9.00 - but only because we wanted to, they were quite happy for us to stay if we'd wanted, even overnight, and we stayed in the same room the whole time. As I say, I really couldn't fault the 2 midwives involved in our birth and I am very picky! good luck to everyone still to go.

They reckoned the reason it was busy yesterday was everyone psychologically holding out to get to 1st September for the schools. They seemed to be coping fine and the postnatal ward looked quiet and peaceful when I walked past.

Mumpbump Mon 03-Sep-07 11:00:10

Congratulations, barbamama! Pleased to hear things went so smoothly for you...

My m/w came to do the home assessment yesterday and clarified that the unit had been closed 3 times in the 18 years she'd been m/w. Of course, she didn't mention whether that was 3 times in the last year... Anyway, we're all systems go for a homebirth so hopefully won't have to see the inside of any hospital!!

kozel10 Thu 18-Dec-08 11:41:17

I am faced with the choice of where to have my second child which is due July 09. I had my first at ESH in 2004. I shake at the mere mention of the place.

I was at the time quite overweight and I was treated as a leper throughout every visit. I was a nuisance and disgusting to be drawing on their resources. I had never in my life experienced prejudism or bullying until I became pregnant.

I had to be induced, which they did and then pretty much abandoned me in a room all night. My waters broke and I started contractions through the night. The staff absolutely refused to let me call my husband to let him know I was in labour and I was told he would not be allowed in until 10am the next morning. I laboured the whole night completely on my own (many times on the floor).

Having been induced, my contractions started to occur the next morning with very few breaks in between. I was advised to have an epidural which I accepted. The midwife and the anaesthatist were bickering and arguing for 20 minutes whilst getting ready for this. I was sat up and the epidural was administered. The anaesthatist suddenly swore and said he'd gone in too far. I was warned that I may begin to feel very ill.

I eventually gave birth at 10pm and then was put into a private room where I was left. I began to have excruciating headaches and I couldn't move my neck. My baby kept gagging on mucas. I was never encouraged to feed her or anything so did this on instinct although I didn't know what I was doing. I could barely sit up and kept thinking I was going to faint. I buzzed for help which came eventually and was given two paracetamols and then left till the morning. I was screaming for my husband by now as I was in agony. I was told again that I would not be allowed to call him and he would not be allowed back until visiting time.

The next day, I was told that I would have to go back to theatre to have a blood patch done on my spine. The nurse irritably asked what I wanted her to feed my baby with and got very impatient when I couldn't talk for crying.

I came back from theatre with a drip in each arm and left yet again to cope with my baby alone ( try using the wheeling a crib and two drips to the toilet). Not once was I offered food or even a wash. When I asked, the nurse said that I should have filled out a menu (How? in theatre). She said I'd have to go to the day room to see if there was anything left. I practically crawled there as my husband was told that he wasn't allowed to get anything for me and he was refused entry to the day room anyway. Blood patch hadn't worked (they tried 4 times in the end on seperate occassions). I was moved to a ward. My husband drew the curtains round so that he could help me to attempt to feed whilst laying down, there were other fathers and I desired some privacy as I was struggling. The nurse ripped the curtains back and said that I wasn't allowed to have them closed as it was a security risk

Throughout all of this, my own Mother was understandably beside herself and was reluctant to leave my side. Again, she was allowed very limited access to me.

I had 2 years of severe post natal depression and couldn't bond with baby for 7 months. This all definitley contributed to it. I only wish that I had had the strength to fight for justice but I was so broken and humiliated. Can't believe that I have found the strength to have another child but I could never go back to ESGH. The good news is that I am starting 6 stones lighter this time.

BalloonSlayer Thu 18-Dec-08 14:27:51

What a horrible story Kozel. You poor thing.

As far as I know, Haywards Heath is still going - despite rumours that it had closed in Sep last year. It definitely hadn't as I had my DS2 there in Sep 07.

Dropdeadfred Thu 18-Dec-08 14:33:28

kozel10 - that is a terrible story. I'm sorry you had to go through that.
I had my dd3 at ESH in May 2005 and I have to say that the care i received was brilliant. te midwiveswere kind, attentive and friendly. my dh was allowed to stay with me all day and i happily left to go home the same day (gave birth at approx 8am got home at approx 4.30pm). It was a very nice experience.

I cannot understand how i could have had such a different experience to you sad think it is shocking what you went through!!

Good luck with your next birth and well done for the weight loss!! smile

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