Okay, so here goes.
Before we TTC, I need personal experience relating to Houston area hospitals. I live in SW Houston, but I will drive as far as the Woodlands to have a nice birth experience. I doubt that I am a candidate for a VBAC, I will find that out soon. For now I expect to have a cesarean section. My last childbirth experience was a wonderful as a planned pre-term cesarean could get. DS was in my arms in less than 5 minutes after birth and never left my sight until later in the day when he failed to maintain a constant temperature. DS was placed in the warmer and monitored by one nurse for about an hour and a half then returned to me until we left the hospital. We slept in the same bed, I wheeled him around the floor when I felt like walking and were pretty much left alone except for temperature checks and tummy massages. Only one nurse seemed to be a relic from the past but I only saw her once right after delivery. The rest of my stay was positive, and encouraging. My choices were not questioned, nor my parental rights challenged.
Since then we have moved, and I am in search of a similar experience. I have perused a few L&D websites. Some are okay, some are better than others and one stated that the Hospital Nurses were the primary caregiver of the child. Um, NO they will not be.
So ladies please take the time to answer my questions and share your experiences.
1) Natural or cesarean Birth
2) Where did you deliver?
3) Who was your OB/Midwife
4) Did the nurses support your decisions?
5) Was the hospital, clean, bright, open and inviting.
6) Were the facilities modern.
7) Did you have to pay for parking? If so, how much?
8) Did the hospital provide free wi-fi?
9) Was the dining acceptable?
10) On a scale of 1 to 10, rate your experience.
Married. Mom to 1. Due 10/12.
Most don't. The hospital situation here is absymal. I would say that if you are planning a repeat cesarean, St. Luke's is by far the closest thing to a mama-baby friendly hospital we have. Many moms have had wonderful family-centered cesareans there. They do not separate mom and baby unless there is a really serious reason (you can even breastfeed on the OR table - just ask ahead of time). As far as I understand, they are a pretty modern and up to date hospital and do have wifi.
And on the opposite end of the spectrum, cross Women's off your list. Erase it. It's about as bad as it gets.
If I end up with another c/s, it will only be at St Luke's.
Oh, I would never even consider Women's. My experience from visiting friends was more than enough to let me know that Women's is not an option.
Which Saint Lukes?
Thank you for your reply.
Married. Mom to 1. Due 10/12.
1) Natural or cesarean Birth: Natural unmedicated
2) Where did you deliver? St. Luke's (med center)
3) Who was your OB/Midwife: Midwives w/ the Women's Specialists
4) Did the nurses support your decisions? Yes (they called CPS about eye ointment, but apologized profusely for doing so citing hospital policy. According to the nurse, CPS tells them to stop wasting their time when they call, but they still have to do so.)
5) Was the hospital, clean, bright, open and inviting.: Yes (as much as a hospital can be)
6) Were the facilities modern. Yes
7) Did you have to pay for parking? If so, how much? I honestly cannot remember, but we valet parked when we got there and my mother retrieved our car later and moved it to the garage. According to her, the garage was easily accessible and parking was plentiful.
8) Did the hospital provide free wi-fi? Yes
9) Was the dining acceptable? Yes (again, it was good for a hospital). We weren't there very long, but we manly ate food that my mom brought us.
10) On a scale of 1 to 10, rate your experience. 7 - Birth was fantastic. No interventions or pressure to intervene. We co-slept and exclusively breastfed. There was never any mention of anything other than BFing by any staff member. DD NEVER left our sight the entire stay not even for a second. I was mainly annoyed by the temp/BP checks that seemed to go on all night long! One of the nurses seemed a little aggravated when I told her to come back several times to check DD's temp because she was busy nursing; she also offered to bath DD multiple times even though we told her we were not interested in bathing her at the hospital. My DH is very direct and had no problem telling everyone "no" to anything they offered; I left him to do all the dirty work ;) Overall though, if I ever had to go back to a hospital, I would so to St. Luke's without hesitation.
Let me know if you have any other questions!!
1) Natural or cesarean Birth - Both c-sections 1st due to cord entanglement, 2nd due to MD not wanting to do VBAC post dates (and my dates were perfect)
2) Where did you deliver? - 1st - Memorial Hermann Memorial City 2nd - Memorial Hermann Katy
3) Who was your OB/Midwife - Kristin Schmidt, MD - Premier OB/GYN
4) Did the nurses support your decisions? - 1st - Did ointment w/o checking; OK w/ no vax. 2nd - OK with no oint or vax (although I am allergic to oint). Great with rooming in & BFing. At Memorial City our Pedi (Peter Jung of Blue Fish Pediatrics) did his exams in the room. The doc at Katy (Texas Children's) would not do that, although my DH went with DD.
5) Was the hospital, clean, bright, open and inviting. - Both were great. Katy was a little nicer, but Memorial City has been redone since then,
6) Were the facilities modern. - yes
7) Did you have to pay for parking? If so, how much? - No at either place. Medical Center parking is $12/day.
8) Did the hospital provide free wi-fi? - Yes to both.
9) Was the dining acceptable? - Yes, both had a room service type menu where you called when you were hungry and ordered what you want. I am dairy free, and do not eat beef or pork, and was still able to eat. Memorial City has TONS of restaurants around and a skywalk to a mall. Katy is more isolated.
10) On a scale of 1 to 10, rate your experience. 1st - 6; 2nd - 8. At memorial City, they separated my baby & I during recovery for quite a while and gave DS a bath before bringing him to me. DH could stay with him. I had ad problems with my BP dropping post op and so I could not really object. They were much better at leaving the baby with me and gave me everything I needed afterwards. Our pedi was awesome about doing exams in the room with us. At Katy, I was separated from DD for while they completed my tubal and closed me up, but they brought her back as soon as I was in a room. The doc (random on call doc since our pedi did not go to Katy), insisted on DD going to the nursery for exams. The nurses were great at clustering care so they did not wake me up 20 times during the night. However, at Katy they would not provide an electric breast pump (saying they were only for NICU moms), so I had to get MIL to bring mine from home (I am a cow). I would deliver at Katy again, but would scope out a better ped in advance.
Maybe I missed it, but why are you not a candidate for VBAC? Or are you unsure if you are a candidate?
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