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Considering switching hospital for antenatal care - advice needed

(5 Posts)
AmberRose17 Sun 02-Aug-15 11:37:56

Hello. I'm almost 24 weeks pregnant and have been having a bit of a stressful time since the anomaly scan at 20 weeks. I'm wondering if switching hospitals for antenatal care might help and am interested in your collective wisdom.

The scan showed up a mild anomaly and I've been back for a follow up scan which has triggered a consultation with a specialist. My hospital (Lewisham) have been really poor in their communication with me which had caused me a lot of stress - not giving me any info about this anomaly, not ringing when they said they would, and having phone numbers which result in answerphone messages with out-of-date messages on. I've still not managed to talk to anyone about this since they discovered it almost four weeks ago. My midwife is based at my GP surgery and I've only met her once, she works half a day a week and there is no contact number or email I have for times like this.

All of this has led me to google neurotically, consult the ARC helpline and a pay for second opinion via the Fetal Medicine Centre on Harley St (which was reassuring). Turns out Lewisham have booked me in for a consultant appointment in a month but I only found out by eventually getting through to the antenatal clinic. I still don't know what this all means and whether it will affect my birth choices and mean lots of extra scans, which I'd like to avoid if possible.

I understand the NHS are completely overstretched and we are in the holiday season. And have no doubt that they're brilliant when things are an emergency. But can't help feeling I've had unnecessary stress which could have been prevented by having someone, anyone, to talk to about this.

I'm wondering if I might be better off transferring my antenatal care to Kings, which is not much further away - I know their specialist Fetal medicine unit had a great reputation. Thing is, I'm quite keen to use the Lewisham birth centre. Has anyone transferred for antenatal care but used the original hospital's birth facilities? How do I even go about switching?

Also, do you know if there's anything I can do to get more access to my midwife?

Sorry for long winded post and any advice or thoughts appreciated!

AmberRose17 Sun 02-Aug-15 18:44:15


Boysclothes Sun 02-Aug-15 18:54:07

Hmmm. If you wanted to change for AN care, you'd have to go back to your GP, get referred to Kings, rebook with them, then repeat the whole thing back with Lewisham just in time for birth. Sounds stressful. I think you might be better off trying to improve Lewisham first. Phone the switchboard and ask to be put through to the on call supervisor of midwives and explain everything to her... She should get everything sorted for you. Best of luck x

AmberRose17 Mon 03-Aug-15 08:25:27

Thanks boysclothes you are right - that sounds like a huge hassle and I guess there are no guarantees things will be better at King's anyway! Just so frustrating to be left without adequate information at such an anxious time.

contractor6 Mon 03-Aug-15 09:12:30

I'm with Woolwich and found sometimes the system between mw and hospital isn't great, but then the hospital always gets it fixed whilst am there. I have heard good things about Lewisham birthing centre from others so id persevere with them.

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