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St Thomas's hospital,London anyone given birth there?

(14 Posts)
Ellora Tue 09-Sep-08 21:50:57


Am registered with St Thomas's hospital but to be honest as its my first still not sure how familiar if at all I am going to be with the hospital.

Can anyone tell me a bit about the care and labour rooms, cleanliness. I have looked at the Health Commission survey but would love to speak with someone who has actually given birth there just for a few tips!!


Lotster Tue 09-Sep-08 23:44:05

Hi there,

I had my son two years ago at St Thomas's. There are two sides to the place The Home from Home and the Birth Centre.

The calm, peaceful Home from Home side, is for those who manage without drugs - it has 2 or 3 water birthing rooms and a pot plant filled chillout area with a view of the Thames and the London Eye etc. I actually had to double check on the tour that I wasn't accidentally on the private tour! The birthing rooms also have a view of the Thames and you can stay in them for 24 hours, as can your partner on a pull out sofa bed.

My husband and I were totally seduced by this...

The midwives were very nice on this side. Unfortunately my baby was back to back and didn't turn in labour, I couldn't push him out in the water so had to transfer to the Birth Centre for a spinal block and forceps. I don't know if the fact I had a freelance midwife on the day affected things. She was so busy crossing the t's on my labour notes she didn't think I was far along when in fact I was 10cms.

Anyway, I found the BC quite a contrast - much busier, only a few people bothered to introduce themselves whilst preparing me for and in theatre. I didn't feel important or respected at all like on the HfromH.

Post-natal ward was 6 beds to a room. Care very hit and miss depending on the shift, daytimes were better. Little help through the night. You really have to ask.

My room was next to the midwives desk so heard the phones and talking all night.
The shower had a broken holder so I had to hold it over myself and wash with one hand. Very slow to discharge us too.

On the positive side, I got a visit from a physio and a breastfeeding counsellor.

If you went Home from Home start to finish I think it would be amazing. Maybe because I was exhausted and over it by the time I got to the Birth Centre side I had no chance to make any bonds with the staff that side, which if you plan to go straight in there you would do, and maybe get better treatment during labour?

Maybe take the tour - and don't be fobbed off by seeing the lovely shiny side then get told the BC side is too busy to show you the rooms like we did! Get a good look.

Good luck,

Ellora Thu 11-Sep-08 22:04:30

Thanks Charlotte that has helped so much, great tips and will ensure in the tour I see everything.

Thanks again

snickersnack Thu 11-Sep-08 22:10:44

I had ds in the Birth Centre. It was great - lovely midwife with me the whole time, room big and clean with own bathroom (compare with C&W where I had to share a bathroom during labour). Best tea and toast I've ever had made by mw afterwards. Only spent 6 hours on the ward but it was hugely hugely better than C&W in every single respect.

tyaca Fri 12-Sep-08 08:39:48

had dd there.
antenatal care was great. for birth and postnatal there was a big difference for me between the day and night staff. day were all fab, night were terrible. if i went there again, i would look into how you discharge yourself because i would need a v good reason to stay in the postnatal ward overnight. in fact i think i would do that in whatever hospital I was in. BUT - like i said, day MWs were absolutley wonderful both for labour and in postnatal wards. plus i had read lots of horror stories about cleanliness on maternity wards and i could not fault tommies as it was clean throughout. and the views are great. i know that seems v secondary but i still feel a funny rush when i cross westminster bridge and remember dd was born there grin

v good luck!

dairymoo Fri 12-Sep-08 08:51:14

I had DTs there just over a year ago. Was in the Birth Centre and had two lovely MWs who stayed with me throughout. Actually gave birth in theatre with forceps but everything was explained to me as we went along. Both DTs ended up in SCBU and so I was given a room on my own - which was apparently bigger than the provate rooms! - and I stayed in for 6 days.

All in all, I thought the care was v good and I got a lot of breastfeeding support as well.

My parents were amazed at how the birth centre rooms and the wards had better views over the Thames than some expensive London hotels!!

tyaca Fri 12-Sep-08 11:19:55

dairy - my family were v impressed by the views too grin. i was induced overnight taking 5 hours to dilate fully. after --thank god!-- the epidural had kicked in i just remember the lights on the london eye twinkling and the way the old glc building was lit up. mind you, i was wasted by this point.

Ellora Sun 14-Sep-08 22:50:04

Thanks so much for the tips, been so much better than any Health Commission survey in giving me a good grasp of what to expect!

How come "dairymoo" you were in for 6 days?

I still cannot understand what determines how long you stay in for? Is it recovery time I thought but cannot quite understand?


edam Sun 14-Sep-08 22:53:52

Ask them how many midwives they have on at night when most people give birth (I understand 3am is peak time). When I was there, some years ago, there was just ONE midwife to seven women in labour. That's why I ended up with a third degree tear - no midwife in the room to guide my pushing.

The home from home unit is fab but all the pot plants in the world aren't a ha'porth of use with no midwife.

KatJKin Thu 03-Dec-09 12:18:30

I am hoping to change from Kings CH to St Thomas's.
I was just wondering, when you arrive at the hosp are you automatically taken to the home from home side if there are no complications?

SnoozingCyborg Fri 24-Jun-11 17:01:07

Bump! Any news lately on whether cuts are affecting birth care at St Thomas'? Turns out it's my local.

TransatlanticCityGirl Sat 25-Jun-11 10:39:20

I have not given birth there yet but I am due to any day now. I have been on both the normal tour and also got a private tour from my midwife, since the normal tour only takes you to the Home from Home birthing unit. My midwife also took me to see the labour ward, post-natal ward, Landsdell Suite, and one of the theatres.

I think a few things have changed since Lotster has given birth so while I cannot comment yet on the care given while in hospital, a few things worth noting:

- There are two water birth rooms
- The garden room is accessible to both home from home and birthing unit patients. It is much cooler than the wards. Apparently it's not used that much.
- There are 3 or 4 people to a room in the postnatal ward depending on which room you get
- Yes, the views from home from home are spectacular. The labour ward rooms have started to creep into the home from home section, so there are two labour ward rooms that benefit from the same view, if you are lucky enough to get one.
- You can upgrade to a private room in the Landsdell suite for £690 per night. These rooms are much smaller than the NHS rooms, look a little bit grubbier, but your partner can stay overnight and the ratio of midwives to patients is higher.

I know someone who gave birth at St. Thomas' a few weeks ago and she was very happy with the care she received, however she was a private patient.

She also tells me that they had to close down new admissions about 30 mins after she arrived because they were so busy!

TransatlanticCityGirl Sat 25-Jun-11 10:40:52

Also forgot to mention re: the post-natal wards. They were very airy and clean looking, but also warm and noisy!

nme123 Mon 10-Apr-17 23:46:04

I have experienced Maternity care from St Thomas Hospital during the pregancy and birth of my baby daughter last week.
It started with a referral from our GP to St Thomas where I had a first midwife checkup and she said I could be offered home midwife support. I accepted and since then have received all my midwife visits at home! so easy and convenient, they just arrive - usually the same one, Louise who is very friendly, supportive and caring.
I had a fear of childbirth and was adamant from the outset that I needed to have an ELCS. St Thomas did run me through a series of meetings with numerous midwifes, doctors, psychotherapists and even anaesthetists to try to find a compromise that did not involve ELCS, but in the end they could see that my phobia was acute and medically confirmed. Then 4 weeks to go, my ELCS was scheduled!
Since then it was amazing, on the day I came with my partner and we had a large room with just one other mother and facing parliament and big ben. The surgeon (Adam - a lovely young English doctor with a confident manner) came to talk me thru the procedure and spent extra time answering all our questions and making me comfortable.
We went in first and the procedure was absolutely painless, suberbly professional and very personal (with my musical choice and my partner able to cut the cord)
Our daughter was born after just 10 minutes and then another 40 mins of stitching me up before we were taken back to the recovery room. Our baby was calm and the midwives were very attentive to our every question and need. We spent another 2 hours recovering before being moved down to the postnatal ward
There we shared a room with 2 other mum, but it was fairly quiet and we had a lovely bed by the window with a river view. Again the midwife team and doctors were on hand 24 hours, so we could get everything we needed such as baby formula, cot bed, 3 hot meals which were delicious and regular changes of my dressings etc
Next day I had no pain or problems, our baby was checked again by all the specialists and by the end of the day we were offered the choice to stay overnight or go home. We decided to go as the room had filled up to 4 (which is the max per room) but we were stocked up with all the supplies we needed to get baby home and thru the first few days of parenthood
On leaving we were sorry to say bye to the lovely ladies on the postnatal team.
but next day our home midwife visit gave us another check over.
5 days later and my c section dressing was removed to show an incredibly neat and well stitched incision. I am very very grateful and happy that we had such a great service from ST Thomas & Guys - I cant believe that private healthcare would be any better and amazingly it is all free on the NHS. Keep it up!

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