Which is the best maternity unit near St Albans?

(17 Posts)
LateBloomer41 Tue 11-Apr-17 23:04:21

Hi, I recently found out I'm pregnant - 3 weeks - and I've been told by my local doctor surgery to choose and contact a maternity unit of my choice for antenatal care. I'm new to the area (east St Albans). Which ones are best? Researching QE2/Lister, L&D and Watford - although see very mixed reviews of Watford. Help please!

SaintAlban Wed 12-Apr-17 09:05:45

Congratulations! flowers
Are you on the St Albans mums Facebook group? You'll get the most recent advice and experiences there.

LateBloomer41 Wed 12-Apr-17 13:55:42

Thanks. No, I'm not on FB group. I think some friends and family are on there and don't want to inadvertently let the cat out of the bag yet....

SaintAlban Wed 12-Apr-17 14:08:55

I see! I know opinions are very divided between Lister and Watford, but as I am well past having babies I am not paying that much attention.
I always think that Watford is a nightmare to get to, I would opt for easier access.

andwhatbecameofthemonkey Wed 12-Apr-17 18:36:31

I gave birth in Lister, while the after care of my ds in nicu was excellent, I would not choose to give birth there again. I am looking to go to L&D if we have another!

LateBloomer41 Wed 12-Apr-17 21:45:12

@SaintAlban - Agreed about difficulty/traffic issues with Watford!

@andwhatbecameofthemonkey - thanks for sharing your experience. What turned you off Lister? And what draws you to L&D?

Wigeon Wed 12-Apr-17 22:41:25

I've had two babies in the birthing unit in Watford, one whilst living in St Albans. I had positive experiences both times, but then they were both normal births, no complications, no overnight stay needed.

Watford to St Albans is potentially a nightmare to get to, at rush hour. Not at rush hour it can be fine. This is obviously not ideal with a baby who doesn't know to avoid rush hour in terms of labour timing!

Have you read the maternity sections of the most recent Care Quality Commission reports of those hospitals? Anecdotes can only tell you so much, and are likely to be biased in favour of people who have had negative experiences.

NotSoHankyPanky Wed 12-Apr-17 22:46:03

Had dd1 in Watford 6yrs ago, emcs, aftercare was awful. Very little help establishing feeding etc.
Dd2 nearly 4 yrs ago and Viacom was handled well but again postnatal poor.
Access is poor from St Albans and parking was terrible too.

NotSoHankyPanky Wed 12-Apr-17 22:46:41

Vbac not Viacom!

andwhatbecameofthemonkey Thu 13-Apr-17 05:35:37

I went into premature labour and was treated mostly as an inconvenience. I had issues with being unable to wee and they just kept telling me to drink water; which I did for 3 days before they finally scanned me while in active labour (was taken through the hospital in a wheel chair with no pain relief) to see ds was crushing my bladder/kidneys they put in a catheter and the bag instantly filled up!! They also didn't believe I was in labour the machine was faulty and wasn't picking up my contractions and they left me for ages not checking on me, deciding I should have a c section before examining me and realising I was 10 cms. But the facilities are good and the nicu is excellent so not all a bad experience and of course I have my ds!

Januaryjojo1 Thu 13-Apr-17 20:28:34

Watford general has a new access road recently opened, Thomas Sawyer way.
It's now the only direct road to the hospital coming from down by b&q/mother care.

LateBloomer41 Thu 13-Apr-17 21:19:56

Thanks all, really helpful. I'll dig out those CQC reports, thanks @Wigeon !

Wickedgirl Sun 16-Apr-17 18:48:49

I had my four at Barnet hospital

The staff there are lovely

Insertwitticismhere Mon 17-Apr-17 05:16:32

I had both of mine at Watford. The CQG report makes for depressing reading but I've nothing but praise for them. Had my first dc in 2015 and my 2nd Dec 2016 and there have been noticable improvements in that time.

Maryburke Wed 26-Apr-17 06:24:51

Hi LateBloomer4,
I am in the exact same position as you.
I'm fairly new to the area, 5weeka pregnant and no idea about the best maternity hospital's.
Does anybody know if you can talk to somebody in the hospital or take a tour at this very early stage?

MadameElectricChair Fri 05-May-17 16:17:26

I had my second child at Watford by CS. They were far better than the L&D! I had the choice of Watford or WGC but chose Watford because I could have antenatal appointments in St Albans, that may have changed now though.

St Albans Mums has a very restrictive entry criteria. You have to prove you are local somehow, not easy if you have strong security settings. I imagine it to be like Netmums but far more tedious.

juneau2 Sat 06-May-17 07:27:41

I had DS2 at Watford (but that was six years ago!). Maternity care was excellent - I honestly couldn't fault it - midwives were great.

I had to get there in rush hour and my labour was short so it was a real rush, but we got there in time. The main issue with Watford is the parking, which is awful. It's a big hospital covering a huge catchment area with masses of patients and visitors and the car park is simply too small. It's also very expensive, but that's the case everywhere.

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now