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is it possible to pay for an epidural in an NHS hospital ?

(23 Posts)
mojomummy Fri 02-Jun-06 16:08:31

I had an epidural last time & am desperate for one this time, but feel I may be out of luck.

If I paid for one, who would I pay, how much & would I have to pay for a midwife to be with me as well ?

SoupDragon Fri 02-Jun-06 16:13:12

Um... why do you think you'll have to pay??

FioFio Fri 02-Jun-06 16:14:15

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FioFio Fri 02-Jun-06 16:14:25

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FioFio Fri 02-Jun-06 16:14:47

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kama Fri 02-Jun-06 16:15:24

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kama Fri 02-Jun-06 16:15:36

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FioFio Fri 02-Jun-06 16:16:03

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spinach Fri 02-Jun-06 18:46:52

why would you pay? just demand one...

Esmummy Fri 02-Jun-06 18:48:24

It has been mentioned that they may bring in having to pay for epidurals but nothing has been decided as yet so it is certainly a long way off if it does happen.
I am pg and heard about this before i feel pg so was my first qustion to midwife

mears Fri 02-Jun-06 18:50:37

You cannot and will not pay for an epidural in the NHS. Why do you feel you would be out of luck mojomummy?

Esmummy Fri 02-Jun-06 18:53:35

fell pg of course

LadySherlockofLGJ Fri 02-Jun-06 18:57:01

I aked for one, as I had been induced and I went from nothing to every 5 minutes, and boy was it painful.

They told me the An,,,, was busy to which I replied "In a hospital this size, there is more than one, bring me an epidural, I will pay"

He came anyway........ Seemingly I had paid for it in taxes, no charge.

mojomummy Sat 03-Jun-06 05:07:49

just feel that I was lucky in getting one last time & that this time I won't : - /

I don't think/want to cope without one, so want to check my options beforehand. Also, think you have to have a midwife with you all the time & if there is a shortage etc etc....

Still, I'm up at this early hour with a thrombosed pile, so may even end up with a c-section...

SoupDragon Sat 03-Jun-06 08:44:19

The only luck involved is whether an anaethetist is available to give it to you or if they're all in surgery.

edam Sat 03-Jun-06 09:46:06

Mears is right, the NHS cannot charge you for any aspect of your care. The car park might cost an arm and a leg, though...

mojomummy Sat 03-Jun-06 09:55:39

so what's a girl to do then, either hope & maybe be disappointed, or go completely private ?

Laura032004 Sat 03-Jun-06 10:01:04

You don't have to have a MW with you all the time if you have an epidural. Some say you should have one if you do, as it is quite a high form of intervention, but in my experience of having one, the MW still only popped in every quarter/half an hour.

I'm sure if you go in with the intention of having one, and don't leave going in too late, then you've probably got a good chance of getting what you want

mears Sat 03-Jun-06 11:05:50

You absolutely should have a midwife all the time if you have an epidural. Reason being is that you can have a dramatic fall in blood pressure which can affect both mum and baby.

You actually should have a midwife with you all the time when in labour. One-to-one care improves outcomes and labour experience for mums and babies.

The issue of epidurals was debated at the midwives conference because women often opt for them without having any idea of the effect they have on labour.

Yes they are a good form of pain relief but they can actually prolong labour, lead to intervention such as drips to get contractions more effective, inability to push baby out resulting in ventouse/forceps. Drugs in epidural can affect baby (used to be thought they didn't). Falls in blood pressure can cause problems for baby. Epidurals can make your temperature go up which leads to unnecessary intravenous antibiotics being given 'incase' the cause is infection.

Women need to know exactly what epidurals do so that they can make informed choices.

Notquitesotiredmum Sun 04-Jun-06 14:29:56

I had an epidural with ds1, and was v. glad of it too after 28 hours of horrid labour and getting no where. I fully intended to have one with ds2, but things moved too fast and after just 2 hours of labour I was pushing for England. DS2 arrived 20 minutes after that!

So . . .ask early for your anaesthatist and epidural if you are sure that you want one, as you may not have as much time as with your first delivery. Be clear, loud and insistent. However, I was really, really glad that I didn't get one second time, as my body was doing all of the right things, and recovery after the birth was amazingly quicker. I was ready to go home three hours later!! (And I had a bag packed to stay for 6 days as with ds1!! You have to wait 6 hrs, I think, to make sure there are no complications.)

I really enjoyed both births (well, in retrospect I did!!) So, do ask for your epidural, but do be prepared to go with the flow too, you may decide that you are OK without it.


Best of luck

schneebly Sun 04-Jun-06 14:42:13

I had one with ds1 and didnt with ds2 and although ds1's birth was pain free, I feel I had a 'better' birth with ds2 - I felt more in control, labour was faster, I had less tearing and recovered very quickly. On the other hand - as long as there is an anaesthetist available and you labour isn't too fast you should be able to get one no problem.

nicnack2 Sun 04-Jun-06 14:42:18

with ds2 i was asked when i phoned into the maty unit to say i was on my way was it my intention to have a epidural. So i would make it known to the ward as early as you can.

mojomummy Mon 05-Jun-06 09:58:24

Thanks - I arrived at hospital after a couple of hours with DD1 & asked for an epidural as soon as we arrived. the nurse was surprised I was 5 cm (so were we !) & wrote on my notes I was 'distressed' (I wasn't, just concerned about getting the epiudural).

The anathetist arrived within 1/2 an hour & I more or less had a pain & trauma free birth. No complications, ok, DD was ventous, but that may well have been the case anyway.

I had terrible pile problems last time, so wasn't looking forward to pushing. This time I've got a thrombosed pile (about an 1.5 x 1 inches) hanging around, so even LESS looking forward to pushing/straining )

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