"Maternity Ward Experience"

About: Armadale Hospital / Birth Suite (and Antenatal Assessment Unit) Armadale Hospital / Maud Bellas Maternity Ward & Neonatal Nursery

(as a parent/guardian),

My daughter had her first child and my first grandchild at Armadale Hospital as an emergency C-Section.  As her parent, I was concerned and therefore went to the hospital at 4.00 am to see her and check on her after the operation.  However at 4.00 am, after her operation, I wasn't able to see her. Whilst sitting in the Emergency Department waiting room I was only allowed to speak to her on the phone which I found so very rude and cold.  Impersonal at a time in our lives that is meant to be the most unforgettable and memorable, we were made to feel alone, and unable to help one another.

I was then not able to go and see her until visiting hours the next day that started at 3.00 pm, so I had almost a 12-hour wait before I could see her and my grandchild.  It made this very special, first time moment in our lives so cold and clinical.  As her parent, I wasn't able to attend the hospital earlier to see my grandchild and daughter and had to attend like any other visitor.

I understand the partner can attend earlier, but I feel also that there should be an allowance made to allow a parent of the mother to attend and check on their daughter as well as see their grandchild.

We were advised that depending on the midwife on that day, would depend on if I could come up a bit earlier to see mother and baby.  On the last day, discharge day, I was then and only then allowed to go up earlier.

To top it off a friend of mine today told me that their daughter-in-law had an emergency C-section at a different hospital and was able to visit her 4 hours after. My friend was able to see their daughter-in-law and grandchild 4 hours afterwards outside of their normal visiting hours.

If I had known this first time experience was going to be like this we would have chosen to birth elsewhere and definitely not at Armadale Hospital.  My friend is the parent-in-law of this birth mother and they had special preference. So beautiful, good on you to this other hospital.

My daughter felt scared, afraid, alone and in pain and wanted her parent, and you as a health service didn't give her that support to allow me in there to comfort and help her through a very scary time in her life.


Response from Diane Barr, Executive Director, Armadale Kalamunda Group

picture of Diane Barr

Dear izarzz97,

Congratulations to you and your family on the birth of your first grandchild. I fully understand that this is a very precious time. I am so very sorry to hear your story that so impacted on you and your daughters experience.

The Armadale midwifery team pride themselves on providing women centred care and wanted me to pass on their sincere apologies that on this occasion “we did not quite get it right”.

I acknowledge this is a special time for your family, however if time does permit it would be great if you could contact directly our coordinator of nursing and midwifery as your daughters experience will assist the team in reviewing current practices to support a more personal approach for our new mothers and their families. Ms Louise Keyes would welcome the opportunity to discuss your concerns further and would like to invite you to please make contact on 08 9391 2193 to organise a meeting.

Thank you for taking the time to share your experience with us, we do hope to hear from you soon.

Yours sincerely

Di Barr

Executive Director

Armadale Kalamunda Group

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