Having a baby should be a joyous and memorable time in any parent’s life. For me, I still remember every detail of the night that Baby L popped into the world – even though I actually wish I could forget some of the gruesome things I saw.
The care you and the little one receive throughout pregnancy, and during labour, may be crucial to what should be an awesome experience. It is therefore important to take the time to choose a maternity unit which is right for you – that could include ensuring that you choose the best facilities, experienced clinicians, a reputation for excellence or maybe even just a good coffee machine!
Like every decision in life, before plumping for something it’s always sensible to look at all options on offer. Therefore, before choosing where to have your sprog, it is worthwhile considering a private maternity unit as it could allow you to take advantage of state-of-the-art equipment and a huge range of world-class facilities. I recently had the chance to take a closer look at private maternity units and found out some cool stuff:
- Enjoy a Comprehensive Range of Services – Successful maternity units that deliver exceptional levels of care require significant resources, which is why many expectant parents choose private hospitals when planning their birth. The very latest, state-of-the-art equipment and exceptional amenities are often available at a private maternity hospital. A fully funded maternity unit will often boast several facilities designed to make pregnancy and childbirth as rewarding an experience as possible. The amenities at the top hospitals in the country include operating theatres located on the labour ward, 24-hour nurseries and a comprehensive selection of emergency equipment.
- Emergency Help at All Hours of the Day – The vast majority of births are happy occasions with no complications, but there is always the risk that something could go wrong during an arduous labour. This is why private maternity units will often ensure that a consultant anaesthetist is ready and waiting in labour wards on a 24-hour basis. Emergency operating theatres are fully equipped and ready to be used at all hours, and specialist equipment is always available when quick responses to emergency situations are required. Among the facilities available at the UK’s best private maternity hospitals include special baby care units, infant intensive care units and adult high dependency units.
- A Bespoke Approach to Pregnancy and Childbirth – There are some fantastic maternity units in the UK, but there can be a tendency to offer a one-size-fits-all approach to care. However, private maternity units will often give parents-to-be the choice of care led by midwives or consultants. There is also the guarantee of one-on-one care from an experienced clinician throughout labour. Antenatal and postnatal classes are made available to patients, and there is practical advice and guidance on breastfeeding from lactation consultants. From the moment mums-to-be arrive at a private maternity ward, they will be allowed to shape the programme of care they receive.
- Extra Help and Support During the First Days of Parenthood – The first days of motherhood can take their toll on new parents, which is why some private hospitals such as The Portland Hospital maternity units have 21-hour nursery facilities – monitored by qualified and experienced maternity clinicians. This gives new mothers the chance to rest and recuperate after the rigours of childbirth.
- Exceptional Accommodation – The leading private maternity hospitals offer their patients a level of accommodation usually only offered by the leading hotels. From standard rooms to exquisitely furnished suites, the accommodation available ensures that patients are allowed to enjoy a relaxing, comfortable time with an added level of privacy. Many rooms also have additional space for guest visits and facilities that allow your partner to stay with you for the duration of your hospitalisation.
- State-of-the-Art Ultrasound Facilities – Most pregnant mothers will receive two ultrasound scans during their pregnancy, but up to five different scans are often made available to patients of private maternity units. As well as the standard dating and anatomy scans, parents have the choice to attend combined screening tests, 3D scans and growth scans after the 30-week mark. Private pregnancy scans afford parents a level of privacy and comfort that can enhance what is always a very special experience.
Having a baby is a pretty surreal experience which takes the parents on a roller coaster of emotions – it is a joyous event, but it can also cause worry, stress and discomfort (and that’s just the dads!). By ensuring that you have exceptional maternity care at your fingertips, you can make the experience of childbirth as enjoyable and rewarding as possible.
How did you choose your maternity unit? What was most important to you when figuring out where to have your sprog? Let me know below!
N.B. This is a collaborative post written with The Portland Hospital and I was compensated for my efforts.