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Mumsnetters aren't necessarily qualified to help if your child is unwell. If you have any serious medical concerns, we would urge you to consult your GP.

GOSH versus the portland

(7 Posts)
bunnybunyip Tue 11-Oct-11 10:29:41

DS needs an op in Jan, we will be in hosp for 2-5 nights. He is covered on DH's health insurance which would mean staying at the portland hosp, and this would give us more control over the timing of the op. I am a bit worried about going privately as have never done it before and I'm concerned there may be hidden expernses. Are the advantages worth it?

mintyneb Tue 11-Oct-11 12:18:49

My DD has had two operations and an investigative procedure under GA at NHS hospitals. I have no experience of private healthcare though.

I would have thought the most important consideration should surely be the experience of the hospital staff who would be operating on your DS and the level of care he would receive afterwards. Does the team at the Portland have the right skills necessary or would he actually be better off under the team at GOSH albeit at potentially a much later date?

My only experience of the Portland was visiting my SIL after she had a section for her first DC. Apart from having someone bring us in a tray of afternoon tea I couldn't see much different to what you would have got in an individual room in my local hospital!

bunnybunyip Tue 11-Oct-11 17:24:24

Thanks mintyneb. The consultant operating would be exactly the same either way. I don't know how to gauge the quality of the aftercare. There is no real rush for the surgery, but my DH will have to book time off work etc and we are more likely to be bumped by an urgent case under the NHS (obviously fair enough), which would make life difficult as we have a fair way to travel, will need to book accommodation in London etc. So we have more control over exact dates going privately.
I think it is the aftercare I am concerned about, I believe they don't really have the team of junior doctors etc in a private hospital, it is just the consultant and if he is busy elsewhere then that could be a pain.

mintyneb Wed 12-Oct-11 14:36:40

oh well thats good that you will have the same surgeon.

As I say I have no experience of private care so can only guess what might be on offer but I'm guessing you would have your own room at the Portland? If you go down the NHS route you will probably end up on a ward with say 6 beds in it. Whilst you will probably be allowed to have one parent stay on a campbed overnight (if your DS is too young to leave on his own), from experience you won't get much sleep as during the night the nurses could be carrying out checks on the other children which will wake you up.

If your DS has any dietary issues, going private may be a better bet. My DD has a severe dairy allergy so is extremely limited in the food she can eat and in an NHS hospital (again in my experience that is) there is no option to put together something off the menu for her. I guess the Portland will probably have a team of chefs on hand who could tailor make any food you might want?

I don't know what the situation is regarding 'intensive care' type care in a private hospital. My guess is that if a patient becomes seriously ill they may have to be transferred to an NHS hospital? If your DS's operation is straightforward then this shouldn't be a problem.

Just trying to think out loud for you really as I don't know what to advise. There are many things I don't like about NHS hospitals but the care our DD has received over the years has been first class and I can't complain. Children generally seem on the whole to get a much higher level of care than adults - again my experience only!

Sleepglorioussleep Thu 13-Oct-11 17:40:22

You would Be likely to get consultant doing surgery and private room in a private hospital. The private room means you may actually sleep.

Woofsaidtheladybird Thu 13-Oct-11 18:52:06

The Portland is having a new paediatric intensive care unit opening around now. GOSH also has a private wing. It depends on what the surgery is that your DS is having, as when I worked at the Portland around 15 years ago the childrens wards were quite 'general' whereas the NHS wards at GOSH have specialised wards, so more access to better specialised after care. Saying that, you'd probably find that access to the specialist care would happen in the private wing at GOSH too, ie, nurse specialists etc doing ward rounds etc. If that makes sense......

lazymumofteenagesons Sat 15-Oct-11 23:04:50

Check with the insurance company what they cover. Make sure that it includes you staying with your son. I think any drugs administered in the hospital are covered, but not anything prescribed afterwards.
The only thing about private hospitals is if something goes wrong and intensive care is needed they sometimes have to transfer you. Just comfort wise you will be far more comfortable at the portland than at the private wing of GOSH. I have experienced both but it was at least 15 years ago.

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