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Fat mothers to be banned from hospital

A midwife led unit though doesn't have the means to deal with a birth that ends up with complications, although any birth has the potential to have complications. I can kind of see their point ( does not mean I agree with it, because I don't), however surely the solution would be to not have a mid wife led unit, but a maternity unit that has full services.

eta..I know plenty of woman, myself included, that had far higher BMIs when they had their babies, and with no complications either. x
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I can understand that overweight women are more likely to have complications, or need assisted deliveries, so perhaps they should be upgrading their facilities? There's surely no reason (other than financial) they can't have both midwife-led, and consultant-led units running in the same hospital if there's not another close by.

I know the hospital I had my son in had both, although it is the largest maternity hospital in the city, others don't have both, but they are not 20 miles away.


mines a skimmed latte
i gave birth 5 months ago and a high BMI puts you on a consultant led list and midwifery led units as previously mentioned don't have consultants - my higher BMI meant i had to be preassessed for the aneasthetic. Also if my size would affect the ability to do certain procedures. Ie. excess on my back may have made an epidural harder to insert. as it turned out i, like hundreds of skinnies had an assisted birth due to a short umbilical cord and my baby having a wee panic and her heart rate dropped - NOTHING TO DO WITH MY WHOPPING BMI! Thank god i was consultant led as if i had been in my local midwifery unit it may not have gone so smoothly and swiftly!
I was told because of my high BMI I would also need consultant led care - I didn't meet her at all during my pregnancy! I still had an epidural no problems. I luckily had no problems regarding my BMI, but for a infection that the NHS don't test for.
Surely if you need special care it would be better not to have to travel 20 miles away?!
I'm sorry but having to travel 20 miles is not exactly a task! Where I grew up in Cornwall you had to travel at least 20 miles because there are no hospitals closer than Plymouth so my mum with a perfectly normal BMI had to travel over 20 miles to have both me and my brother which were both uncomplicated births!
Both of mine were born in Germany in British Military Hospitals, and they were more than a 20 mile drive thinking about it. I can remember speeding down an Autobahn when the boy was due and Colleen's waters broke. He was delivered within 10 minutes of us getting there.
Playing devil's advocate, it is a bit of a hassle though for people who may not drive or have anyone around who can drive them there. It's not a huge distance, but for some people it could be quite difficult to do.

My hospital was about 15 miles away, but I had someone to drive me there.
I think this article has been written in the usual controversial way, trying to say that women are being turned away for being fat. Women with raised BMI's (significantly raised obviously) are at increased risk of many problems and thus are not suitable for midwife led care in a stand alone unit, as this is for low risk women. Its for safety of mum and baby, not "discriminating" against bigger women. Midwife led centres are a luxury which most places dream of, so lucky for those who have one near by, however i think u have to appreciate that this is an additional service to complement the main obstetric unit and to say it should be made into a main unit is simplistic- its costs an absolute fortune to operate a main unit and they probably wouldnt be able to staff it. 20 miles isnt that far, you cant run a main hospital every 10 miles across the country.
i dont think they are meaning to be nasty , i think maybe they should upgrade but perhaps they dont have the money , i think they are doing what hospitals should & thinking safety first.
I had a bmi of over 34 when I had both my kids. It was never made an issue of, not a word was said to me about my weight. When I had my son last year, he was delivered in a midwife led unit (there was a fully staffed labour ward up the stairs though, to be fair) and I was lucky to have no complications. In fact, he arrived 5 mins after I was first assessed by the midwife.

However, if theres scientific evidence to support this idea that very obese women are high risk (at no point was I ever told this by any medical staff), then a midwife led unit would be inappropriate - therefore I can see the point of this.

Many people are excluded from a midwife led unit due to being at high risk of complications, so really its not unusual, to be fair.


SlinkySlimmer !!!
i think firstly a big part of it is a money issue, secondly imagine if a woman with a BMI of >34 went to a midwife assisted labour unit where the nearest labour ward is twenty miles away, and she a complications during labour due to her weight and the baby died, and the outcry it would cause, people would be saying why wasnt she under a consultant led birth. Either way the hospital wouldnt be able to win. An extra twenty miles isnt that far, its about the distance my dad had to travel for his liver transplant. Another reason will also be staffing, as another poster said you cant expect every hospital to be a main one. Yeah ok there will be tragedies because of the distance. But i think that the hospitals do a blooming good job, to say they are under the thumb and funding of a very foolish goverment. JUst my opinion though.

Lizzie xxx

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