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Blacktown hospital - shared care?

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#1 leratocharlie

Posted 28 November 2012 - 10:10 AM

I chose earlier on in the pregnancy to do GP shared care.  This was explained to me as seeing my GP most of the time (much easier when I'd have to take a day off to go to the hospital instead), and then seeing the midwife for key appointments.

This suited me for a couple reasons - the above one, plus I (rightly or wrongly) figured midwives were more likely to be female.  There's a sensitive reason that this was a slightly big thing for me, as I was very badly attacked and sexually assaulted by a man 7 years ago, and seeing a female made me feel more relaxed and less freaked out.

I had my checking in appointment with the midwife, then went back a few weeks later for my first appointment with them.  They were really nice, I felt really comfortable.  I've then been going to see my GP for every other appointment.

I'm now 34 weeks and had an appointment last night to go to the midwives at Blacktown hospital.  They called me half an hour before, and said there'd been a mixup.  I had to see the hospital doctor instead.  When I asked why, they said anyone doing shared care saw the hospital doctor instead of the midwives...  they therefore had to reschedule my appointment.

Coming off the phone, partly due to hormones, I was really upset at this.  I realised it was because now I'm bothered by the fact that I might have to see male doctors more.  (I know - this may not even be the case! I am calling them today to find out if my rescheduled appointment is with a male or female)

Has anyone else done shared care, and found this to be the case, that you have to see the hospital doctor?  I wasn't sure if it was just a Blacktown thing, or everywhere.  

I'm also going to ask them about birthing in a pool - does anyone know if they have that facility there?  Again, for my own sanity, I like the idea of minimising people 'touching' me during labour, unless necessary.  Obviously if they need to, it's fine, I just want to try and stay as calm as possible, plus I'm English so I love baths!

Hope this doesn't sound stupid, and that someone can give me feedback from their experience...


#2 lucky 2

Posted 28 November 2012 - 05:27 PM

Hi there, I think with your past experience and need for a female carer you could also ask your shared care Dr to advocate on your behalf if necessary.
Have you disclosed your history to the Dr and the Hosp?
I think it best if you do so if you can, if they are fully aware of your needs there will be a much better chance of them being met.
Wishing you all the best.

#3 ~spirited~

Posted 28 November 2012 - 05:38 PM

I went through Canterbury Hospital and was given the choice of seeing only female doctors (a big sticker goes on the front of your file). I was happy to see male or female doctors but many patients there see females only (cultural/religious reasons).

Perhaps as you are also at a public hospital in western Sydney you might be given the same choice?

Usually you have an OB appointment after your booking in appt to ensured you are eligible for your chosen method of care- the OB checks for risk factors that may exclude you, eg I was no accepted into the midwifery group program in my first pregnancy as I was diagnosed with gestational diabetes.

#4 leratocharlie

Posted 03 December 2012 - 08:36 AM

Thanks for the replies.

The hospital is aware of my history, yes.  I filled them in during the booking in meeting.  I said I would therefore obviously prefer to only see females, but I understood obviously if I went into labour and there wasn't one free, I'd understand!

I'm going to call them today to find out if I'm booked to see a male or female doctor on Thursday, and try to change it around.  It just makes me feel nervous that now my husband can't be there either as it's during work hours, whereas seeing the midwives was always 7pm ish so he could attend too.

Like you said ~spirited~, it might be that I just have to see this doctor now to establish if I am eligible for the normal midwife program.

With 5 weeks to go til baby is born, I'm just feeling mighty unprepared with changes like this going on!  Hopefully they'll actually answer the phone today and I can get some clarification.


#5 lucky 2

Posted 03 December 2012 - 09:13 AM

I hope things go well today original.gif .

#6 leratocharlie

Posted 03 December 2012 - 03:08 PM

QUOTE (lucky 2 @ 03/12/2012, 10:13 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I hope things go well today original.gif .

Thanks.  I just called - well eventually managed to get through to them.  I hope that's not the number I have to call if I'm in labour, as I haven't had much luck with anyone picking up so far!!

The woman I spoke to said I'm booked into the clinic and it could be either a male or female doctor.  She said she can't guarantee either way.  She said what to do is go there, advise reception that my preference is female.  Then, if a male doctor comes out and calls my name, just to stay seated, and hopefully the next doctor that becomes free will be female.

Seems a bit rude/awkward to me to stay seated... I assume they just think that you haven't turned up yet, so move onto someone else...

It's times like this that I really hate the guy that did this to me!!!!  It doesn't bother me so much day to day anymore.  But to have to have normal experiences affected by it, it really irks me.  And I got all hot and clammy just talking to the woman on the phone, even though I didn't say why, it's just awkward sad.gif

I don't know what happens next either, if I see the doctor, is it another week til I'll see the midwife, as I wanted to ask questions about birthing pools etc which I'm not sure the doctor would normally answer, or if they're in a rush.  Will just have to wait and see I guess.  I hate the unknowns...

#7 lucky 2

Posted 03 December 2012 - 08:15 PM

It sounds like your need to have a female carer is more than a "preference".
I hope you get what you need, it's rough that you have to keep pushing it but I I suppose it's better to be one step ahead if possible and it will help with the need for control.
Have you done some preparation for the birth, ie possible emotional and physical challenges that might/will come up on labour?
You sound like you have really great insight into how you are feeling and why so you have a head start.
All the best with your appointment.

#8 leratocharlie

Posted 07 December 2012 - 08:55 AM

QUOTE (lucky 2 @ 03/12/2012, 09:15 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
It sounds like your need to have a female carer is more than a "preference".
I hope you get what you need, it's rough that you have to keep pushing it but I I suppose it's better to be one step ahead if possible and it will help with the need for control.
Have you done some preparation for the birth, ie possible emotional and physical challenges that might/will come up on labour?
You sound like you have really great insight into how you are feeling and why so you have a head start.
All the best with your appointment.

Thanks.  I did tell them the reasons I really wanted females instead of males, but they just said they can't guarantee it as it's a public hospital...

In the end, I tried to get through to the antenatal clinic the 2 days before my appointment yesterday arvo, so I could move it - my husband had the Wednesday off work so would have been able to attend.  But they didn't answer... i checked my call logs, between myself and my husband we called 97 times on Tuesday and Wednesday, and never got an answer!

So I ended up going on Thursday by myself, and did see a female doctor luckily.  Though I still freaked out because she put a stethoscope on my neck to check my heart murmur... and I have a major phobia of that, related to the attack.  Gah!  On the plus side, she said at that hospital they don't do internal checks etc unless absolutely necessary, which is good as I said I wanted minimal invasive procedures due to my history.

I haven't really done much prep in terms of the emotional and physical challenges, to be honest.  I can't talk to counsellors, I generally try to act like it's not an issue, otherwise it affects my day to day a lot more.  Obviously with my due date being imminent, I am starting to think about it more and will make sure my husband knows things I do/do not want to happen when I'm in labour.  I'm hoping for a water birth, partly as I've heard it's good pain relief, but also it minimises people randomly being in your face!!

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