Um. Nothing. I emailed David Crausby, MP for Bolton north east, after noticing that one of his past campaigns was dedicated towards securing funding for the maternity unit at Bolton Hospital. His website says that he has been “Campaigning to protect the investment into the Royal Bolton Hospital’s maternity facilities,” and he displays a photo with the caption: “Visiting one of the hospital’s brand new delivery suite’s.
The Tories had pledged to cancel the plan that made this possible.”
I guess he visited the birthing suite which was closed when my son was born. He sure as hell would’ve asked questions if his money had been spent on the room with a dirty floor, no pillows and no blinds in the windows.
This is the email I sent him:
I was wondering if you could give me some more information about your campaign to protect the investment into the Royal Bolton Hospital’s maternity facilities. Both of my children were born at this hospital and I have to say that I cannot see where the money has been spent.
When my daughter was born in 2004, a senior midwife came around the ward with a camera, taking photos of what she called the disgraceful state of the unit. Things had not improved when I had my son in 2009.
There was insufficient staff available to examine me and so I was left alone for most of the day. Once I finally got down to delivery, I was given a room with no blinds and workmen outiside of the window. There was no crib for the baby and no pillows on the bed so I was propped up with rolled up towels. Equipment had pieces missing or were not working and our lovely midwife had to keep calling for extra supplies to be brought in, including birthing kits.
When my son was eventually born, it was via emergency section and I was under general anaesthetic. I believe that this was due to the fact that my midwife was left alone with us and that the notes from my previous birth -also an emergency section- were not read. I was distressed and not counselled as there was no staff/ time available to do this. I missed the first hour of my son’s life due to- I believe- the fact that staff were forced to leave me labouring for longer than was safe. My son needed a tube down his throat to help him breathe and I was not there with him, neither was my husband.
On the ward, later that night, a student midwife was the only member of staff available to me and I had to request assistance with lifting my baby and changing sheets on my bed. I was discharged two days later, depsite not feeling ready to leave and not wanting to go home, with no pain relief. I was refused pain relief, despite having had major surgery and being covered in bruises. I also had servere neck pain due to the breathing tube.
At home, my GP and community midwife were appalled and I was given pain relief and antibiotics due to an infection in my c-section wound.
I feel so badly let down by Bolton Hospital. I saw a midwife counsellor to go through my birth notes but it was not enough. I struggled to bond with my son and it affected our whole family life for a long time. How could this have happened? Where is the funding going at Bolton Hospital?
I have been blogging about my experiences and have met many other women who have similar stories. I have also set up a site dedicated towards raising awareness of birth trauma and campaigining for better maternity care. I would love to write about what MY MP is doing about the services in MY area.
I have also recently been interviewed by the Bolton News regarding my blog, which has been announced as a finalist in a national awards scheme. I really hope to raise awareness of birth trauma and the Birth Trauma Association with this.
If there is any further information you can give me as to where the money is going and how Bolton Hospital is going to improve, I would love to hear it.
Today, my children are healthy and happy and family life is good. But there are so many other families (both in Bolton and nationally) where the outcome is so different. Changes are needed and they need to start at Bolton!
I look forward to your response.
There has been no response. I really want to know the answer to my questions, so what next? How can I get someone to give me the answers I need??