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среда, 28 сентября 2016 г.


News of the World columnist Ulrika Jonsson has launched a campaign for better treatment of mums on the NHS.
Like many mothers, Ulrika has been left outraged at the appalling conditions in our overstretched maternity wards.
To join her Mother's Rights Charter email your name and address to If you wish you can also describe your own experiences.
Alternatively, you can fill out the coupon printed alongside Ulrika's column in this week's News of the World.
The charter aims to ensure that all health authorities provide:
1. Adequate qualified maternity staff and free appropriate pain relief on demand at all times.
2. No pressure on any mother to leave hospital until she is painfree
3. Instructions on baby bathing and feeding
4. A 24/7 cleaner contact number in every ward
5. Food and hot drinks around the clock for women who have just given birth
6. A questionnaire for every patient identifying any shortcomings in care.
Here is Ulrika's plea on improving the state of our maternity wards.

YOUR response to my call last week for stories of birth on the NHS left me overwhelmed, and very angry.

It's clear that an ill-judged funding squeeze on overstretched maternity wards has led to appalling suffering.
True, some of you had caring, supportive staff and good pain relief.
But mostly what I received was a litany of misery: rude, aggressive staff—or good staff spread too thin to be much use—bungled procedures and inadequate pain relief.
Frightened women in agony for hours, dirty wards, filthy bathrooms and a lack of aftercare.
What I read made me determined to fight for change. And I need your support. So read on, then sign the form below and send it to me.
I'll ensure Health Secretary Patricia Hewitt knows you believe we deserve better.
She needs to know about Emma in Buckinghamshire, who told me she needed counselling after an anaesthetist failed FOUR TIMES to get her epidural in the right place —then accused her of making it up when she said she was still in agony.
Then there was Pennie in Essex, who spent most of her 28-hour labour begging for pain relief—even though she had an infection, a fever and couldn't stop vomiting.
Finally she was told she needed a C-section. Back on the ward —trembling, exhausted and after 40 hours without food—there was no one to get her so much as a cup of tea."The experience was so traumatic I don't know if I can face having another baby," she wrote.
There was Christine, from Inverness, who only got her C-section after FIVE attempts to induce her failed. She was in labour, having excruciating contractions for nearly FOUR DAYS. "What they did has put me off for ever," she said.
I heard about student midwives being left in charge because there was no one else; of women who were asked, "When do you want to go home?" almost before they stumbled out of the labour ward.

There was the midwife who stormed out of the delivery room after a stand-up row with the anaesthetist. There were quite a few mums who gave up trying to breastfeed because no one could help.
I say all this as a champion of the NHS and its wonderful staff. I owe them my daughter's life.
But it's clear maternity units are seen as the poor relation by many NHS administrators.
Yes, childbirth is a natural experience—but it can also be a life or death one.
So I'll leave the last word to Stacy Dawkins from Hampshire, whose baby died in the womb close to term and was born in circumstances so horrible the doctor collapsed and then fled the room.
"I'd love it if you could mention my son," Stacy wrote. "Not many people do. His name is Sean Dawkins."
That, Mrs Hewitt, is a taste of how much is at stake.

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