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I feel like giving up on midwife appointments

(54 Posts)
strawberrycake Mon 26-Apr-10 17:01:19

I'm fed up of trapsing around for ages for a long wait followed by a 3min appointment. The average appointment involves 45 min there and back, 20 min wait after appointment time and 3 mins of a rushed midwife who doesn't listen to a word. Moans:

-I have bloods taken, and never get results whoever I ask as 'I'm sure you'd be contacted if there was a problem'-well frankly it's just as likely they're lost seeing that's what they'd done consistently with everything else!

-I have notes like 'discussion had about vitamin k' or 'discussion about birth plan' put in my notes, well I certainly wasn't present in those discussions.

-Any question is answered with 'it's in the booklet/ leaflet I gave you'-no you gave me nothing, but I guess I'll google the booklet like everything else.

-I was wondering today when they'd start measuring bump, was very surprised to check notes today and see measurements entered! Even in sessions where my bump hasn't even been felt, let alone measured.

-Other notes are entered such as 'active baby', surely that's soemthing to ask me about as I', with it all the time!

-GP binned my urine container, midwife wouldn't give me a new one so no urine test done. Told to go back to GPs to get another if they binned it (yeah right I'll make that journey for that, it'll be a jam jar in future) BTW they are quite insistant on using the proper containers.

-I moved house halfway though pregnancy and keep getting moaned at that my notes are scribbled on/ not in order. Like I wrote them myself....

-It's so rushed I honestly don't even get eye contact, let alone a how do you feel. Timed today, 2min 40 secs. IS she going for a record? I sat in silent defeat today, not that it was noticed that I said nothing.

I can feel my baby moving and I know he's head down. The pharmacy next door do free blood pressure checks. I'm fed up with the midwife, it's not likely that anything would be pickd up in such half-arsed appointments. I feel like not going unless an issue arises as they only serve to tire me out and piss me off. I was going for a home birth but changed my mind as I dn't think I want this flappy and disorganised woman around when I'm in labour!

Ivykaty44 Mon 26-Apr-10 17:02:02

these appontments were devised to save lives, they sometimes do save lives - its up to you though

RibenaBerry Mon 26-Apr-10 17:04:00

Erm, well appointments are important, but if this is the care you are getting is there any chance of changing midwife team - even if it means changing hospital?

belgo Mon 26-Apr-10 17:05:50

they refused to check your urine, nor checking up on your blood results? It sounds like they are not doing their job probably. I don't blame you for not wanting to go back but I think it would be better if you wrote about your concerns to the midwife manager.

strawberrycake Mon 26-Apr-10 17:09:29

Ivykaty I know they're important, but I'm 36 weeks and consistently they had been no more that blood pressure checks. The standard they are at there's precious little chance of a problem being picked up. How would they without asked questions, physically touching me or getting any test results?

Ribena- I'm scared to move again at this late stage. I moved house when I was 14 weeks and I was 28 weeks when I actually had my next appointment as nothing sent between boroughs despite regular chasing. I've only had 3 midwife appointments (28,34,36) for the entire pregnancy

HumanAtLeast Mon 26-Apr-10 17:11:29

If it's genuinely like that then you need to complain and loudly.

The basic urine and bp checks are very, very, very important indeed. My checks were always v quick indeed as they were super busy but as long as they checked urine, bp and had a feel of/listen to the bump then I was happy to walk the hour there and back for an appointment.

If you aren't getting the basic checks though, that's terrible.

Blood results here btw, you aren't notified unless there's a problem, they just stick the results on the computer. I only knew mine were all okay because I asked during a visit.

strawberrycake Mon 26-Apr-10 17:18:49

Human- That's why I was worried, despite previously being told that results went on the computer I was told that they're not on the computer when I asked at my visit. They were taken 8 weeks ago. I asked who checked them and was told 'the hospital' (this visit was in the hospital). I only asked at the visit because last time they were available on the computer (same hospital checking, although living elsewhere at the time). It's an accurate description of the visits.

legallyblond Mon 26-Apr-10 17:28:09

Agree with Human re the blood results - I just asked for a printout of mine and that's how I got them. But they had them within a couple of weeks...

I think you need to complain.

This really isn't good enough for you. They must test your urine - that is the bare minimum. how would they know if you had gestational diabetes??? They should also be checking the baby's heartbeat every time, as well as fundal height etc. These are just standard checks. TBH, I expect you can do without the "feeding" discussions and birth plan (tell your birthing partner what you want and they can communicate it during the birth I guess).

I am pregnant with my first (so I do get more appointments) but so far have had one at 9 weeks, one at 10 weeks, scan + bloods at 12, one at 16 weeks and have one booked at 25 and 28 weeks.... my shortest appointment so far has been half an hour. Most are 45 mins.

Its such a postcode lottery. (I am booked in at Princess Alexandra, Harlow - great so far...)

vix206 Mon 26-Apr-10 17:34:38

I am with you on this. My midwife took my last urine sample (lovingly prepared that morning) and said 'I'll take care of that for you' before cheerfully throwing it across the room straight into the sanitary bin and handing me a new one for next time shock

What's the point in peeing in a pot if she's just going to bin it? This is my first pregnancy and I would like to feel that I'm having all the checks I am supposed to have. She also never asks me how I am or any questions at all, just sits me down and writes coded stuff in my notes. Next appointment is next week (25 weeks) so I'll see how she is then and have to complain if it is more of the same.

Ivykaty44 Mon 26-Apr-10 17:39:57

You need to put in a complaint - it is really important that this is brought to light and not ignored that these midwives are not taking care.

Please complain or at least send a letter explaining that they need to be seen and watched doing their job

hippopo Mon 26-Apr-10 17:50:52

You are being treated appallingly, sadly it does seem to be a postcode lottery. I felt a bit like this for my first 2 or 3 appointments so moved hospitals and am very happy but appreciate you feel it may be a bit late in the day for you now.

Think you should complain by letter or email even if you just copy what you have writted in original post. You will feel better for complaining and it may help future pregnant women there too.

Also if you feel up to it why not challenge the MW at your next appointment and see what she has to say? If you stand your ground and have your say she has to listen to you but in mean time write/phone/email someone senior in chage who can do something. Maybe email your local MP who maybe ableto help advise especially as they are all after our votes at the moment,

Good luck and best wished for rest of your pregnancy.

cantcarryon Mon 26-Apr-10 18:41:00

The urine tests are VERY important!

At 36 weeks with DS my urine test showed I had severe pre-eclampsia, was immediately admitted and induced. Pre-eclampsia can become life-threatening very quickly.

Please complain about this, this midwife could be putting your life at risk.

LittleSilver Mon 26-Apr-10 18:42:05

Umm, I think you shoudl copy and paste your OP into a letter and post it off to practice manager and PCT.

If she is writing that she has checked fundal height and discussed vit K etc, tht is very serious, as it's basically falsifying notes. That's NMC-worthy imho.

ciaobella19 Mon 26-Apr-10 18:43:26

hi, omg cant believe they are treating you like there anyway you can register with a birthing centre if there is anything like that near where you live?

im sure anywhere else would definatly give you better care and maybe be able to take all your samples? i dont know if they can take bloods this late or anything im only 14 weeks, but just so you feel a bit more reassured!

thinking about you xx

Northernlurker Mon 26-Apr-10 18:50:00

36 weeks and she didn't feel your bump or listen to baby's heartbeat? shock

The way this woman is practicing is neglectful - you NEED to complain. Google for your local PCT PALS (patient advice and liaison service) or if you like sya where you are roughly and I'll search for you.

strawberrycake Mon 26-Apr-10 19:39:35

I've been thinking about this while cooking dinner- could it be possibly difficult to complain. All notes ARE entered into my file, regardless of what is done. It says things like 'fhr heard' , 36 cm, NAD for urine etc. My word against hers?

Interesting about Harlow, I could potentially transfer there as within a reasonable distance and on bus route. I'm at the very edge of London/ Essex.

This is my first pregnancy too, so I've not been aware of what should be happening in the earlier/ mid stages I have to admit so didn't challenge her. It's only after reading about the experiences of others and doing background reading I've become aware of what the norm is.

Schnitzel Mon 26-Apr-10 19:44:04

I am shocked by this. Strawberrycake, you need to escalate this to a senior midwife/manager ASAP. You should not be being treated like this.

LittlePeopleCo Mon 26-Apr-10 19:49:57

Strawberry As the others have said, you really should contact the senior community midwife or the practice manager because what you are describing is appalling. In fact, its so appalling its made me more grateful for the rubbish care I'm getting from my MW, because although its crap, its better than that!

It will be difficult to complain and then face her again, but do it if you have the nerve.

As someone else said, checking urine (aside from all the other issues) is critical. In my 1st pg it was part of my diagnosis of pre-eclampsia and would hate to think what could have happened if it wasn't found.

At least if you complain you're far enough along at 36wks that you won't have to see much of her!

LittleSilver Mon 26-Apr-10 19:50:26

Whether she entered them in your notes or not, if she didn't do it, tht is lying. Maybe you could consider bringing your DH/BF along to next appointment? She could get struck off for doing what you say she is doing.

Emster30 Mon 26-Apr-10 19:51:22

That's pretty crappy Strawberrycake - I haven't been particularly impressed with the midwife care I've had but at least at my 28 week appointment this afternoon she tested my urine sample, checked my BP, felt my bump and listened to the heartbeat so at least I know everything's OK.

Whereabouts are you? You sound not too far from me - I'm booked into Whipps Cross.

Summerhols Mon 26-Apr-10 19:52:12

You need to complain, this is not OK, do not worry about it being 'your word against hers'. As you never know your complaint could be one of many.

Though I think it is important to make it clear that you appreciate that it may be because she does not have enough time - as that will also highlight to the PCT that they need more midwife's.

I am very lucky, can not fault my MW treatment, same MW every time and she really takes time to ask and listen to how I am. But know of other mums to be in my area who have not been so lucky.

Summerhols Mon 26-Apr-10 19:54:34

Oh also thinking it might be worth while going to your next appointment with a list of questions and getting her to focus on those rather than let her lead the appointment.

Just a suggestion - you might have tried it already!

Good luck

TheCrackFox Mon 26-Apr-10 19:58:08

You need to complain - a midwife not carrying out basic tests and falsifying notes is not on. Her bosses cannot do anything about her if they do not actually know.

withorwithoutyou Mon 26-Apr-10 20:00:38

My community m/w for antenatal checks was ok but my birth notes were full of lies and checklists and things where they'd said they'd advised me of all sorts of stuff when they hadn't.

That was nearly 2 years ago and I wish I'd complained. I strongly urge you to complain now.

LittlePeopleCo Mon 26-Apr-10 20:02:05

Summerhols' idea of taking in a list of questions is a really good one, plus could you take a friend along? I doubt she would refuse to answer them if there was a 3rd party there.

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