Watford General Hospital

West Hertfordshire Hospitals NHS Trust

Last updated: 22 Jun 2017

The Delivery Suite

Contact & visitor information

You will be cared for by midwives with medical facilities and doctors on hand if you need them.

a medium unit

4700

births from Apr 2016 to Apr 2017

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11

Labour rooms available

  • Epidural
  • Birth pools available
  • Local Neonatal Unit (LNU)

Pain-relief options

  • Entonox (gas and air)
  • Diamorphine
  • Meptid
  • Morphine sulphate (Oramorph)
  • Pethidine
  • Remifentanil
  • Sterile water injections
  • Epidural
  • Birth pool
Find out more about pain relief during labour

Having a baby here

During labour and birth

  • If you arrive in the early stages of labour
    • When you're in established labour you'll be admitted to the labour ward
    • You'll be seen by a midwife who will check the progress of your labour
    • You'll be encouraged to go home
    • There's an area where you can be assessed
    • You can be admitted to the antenatal ward
    • You can be admitted to the delivery suite/birthing room
    • If you are at low risk of complications and in early labour then you are encouraged to stay at home. Higher risk women can be admitted to the antenatal ward or delivery suite as appropriate
  • Birthing rooms
    • 11 labour rooms
    • 0 Birth pool(s)
    • Birth partners
      • The limit on number of birth supporters is strict
      • The limit depends on the individual circumstances
      • You can have the following number of birth partners with you during labour: 2

    Birth facilities

    • Aromatherapy service
    • Bean bags
    • Birth balls
    • Birth mats
    • Birthing couch
    • Dimmable lighting
    • iPod dock
    • Reclining chair
    • Supporting rope or sling
    • TENS machine
    • Hypnobirthing / Natal hypnotherapy
    • Birthing stools
    • TV
    • Rocking chair

    After you've given birth

    • Private postnatal rooms
      • Amenity rooms are available.
      • £150 per night
    • Provision for partners staying overnight
      • Partners can stay on the postnatal ward on a chair
    • Your stay after you've given birth
      • After you have given birth you'll be transferred to a bed in the postnatal area
      • Women who've had an uncomplicated birth usually stay for 6-12 hours after the birth
    • Contact & visitor information

    How many midwives will I meet?

    The maximum number of different midwives you're likely to see for antenatal appointments is 4 and for postnatal appointments it's 4.

    You'll see the same midwives throughout your pregnancy and after your baby is born, but different midwives when you're in labour.

    You should receive continuity of care from a small number of community midwives wherever possible, with support from your GP/Children's centres.
    Occasionally you may need to see a larger number of midwives during your pregnancy and postnatally. we aim to provide one to one care for all women in established labour from our team of hospital based midwives.

    Find out about the benefits of knowing your midwife

    Statistics

    * We’ve adjusted the data where it’s based on a small number of women to ensure confidentiality
    Compared to the national average, women were:
      What is your situation?

      Is this your first birth?

      Have you had a caesarean for a previous birth?

      Are you at a higher risk of complications?

      Clear answers

      Is this the best unit for you?

      Find out more about your local options and where you want to give birth

      Use our tool to find out

      Who can give birth here?

      • Catchment area
        • Women who live within the catchment area: Watford and Three Rivers, St Albans, Dacorum, and part of Hillingdon
        • You can give birth here even if you don't live in the catchment area

      Support services

      • Accessibility
        • Wheelchair access to the wards and delivery suite
        • Limited mobility: we have 1 labour room that is en-suite and can be used if you have limited mobility.
        • Hearing problems: Signing interpreters can be booked if you have hearing problems by contacting PALS on 0192 321 7187. Find the support request form on http://www.westhertshospitals.nhs.uk/patients/patientservices/pals.asp
        • Sight problems: rooms can be adapted and trust signage has additions for the visually impaired.
        • Learning disabilities: you will be caseloaded by the vulnerable adults team and cared for collaboratively with the delivery suite, they also have access to specialist general teams. This hospital uses a 'Purple Folder' system to support those with learning disabilities.
        • Autism spectrum: you will be caseloaded by the vulnerable adults team and cared for collaboratively with the delivery suite, they also have access to specialist general teams. This hospital uses a 'Purple Folder' system to support those with learning disabilities.
      • Interpreting service
        • Contact PALS on 0192 321 7187. Find support request form on http://www.westhertshospitals.nhs.uk/patients/patientservices/pals.asp
        • 24 hour access to interpreter service.
      • Specialist midwifery teams
        • Antenatal Screening
        • Bereavement
        • Diabetes
        • Infant feeding
        • Perinatal mental health
        • Substance misuse
        • Teenage pregnancy
        • Vulnerable women
        • Specialist midwifery teams jointly cover birthing center and delivery suite.

      Women's experiences

      Reviews of this hospital

      Source: Care Opinion
      • Had my first child at Watford general and it was awful

        All started when I went for my Sweep at the midwife and she had told me I was already 4cm and I should go to the hospital, so me and hubby went home to pack to get ready for the birth of our first...

        by Bmkj, 15 Nov 2018

        Read on Care Opinion
      • A very bad experience

        I chose Watford hospital because I thought they will look properly after me! During my pregnancy was good, apart they I saw like 4-5 midwifes instead 1 how was normal! At 40+6 they put in hospital...

        by Anonymous, 17 Oct 2018

        Read on Care Opinion
      Source: CQC

      Care Quality Commission (CQC) Maternity Services Survey 2015

      Scores are for the NHS Trust that this hospital is part of.

      • Labour and birth

      • Staff

      • Care in hospital after birth

      • Labour and birth

        8.3/10

        Worse compared with other trusts

      • Staff

        8.4/10

        About the same compared with other trusts

      • Care in hospital after birth

        7.0/10

        About the same compared with other trusts

      General information

      • Tours
        • Tours available to book via http://www.westhertshospitals.nhs.uk/ourservices/womens_services/maternity/parent_education/booking.asp or call 0192 321 7686 and leave name, contact details and due date.
      • Breech baby
        • If your baby is breech you'll be encouraged to have a caesarean.
      • Non-NHS Care
        • Private maternity care isn't available here.
      • Breastfeeding accreditation
      • Neonatal care
        • Local neonatal unit (LNU) provides special care for newborn babies in the local area, except for those who are critically ill and need intensive care.
      • Food for partners out-of-hours
        • There are vending machines within the hospital. The main restaurant is open at weekends and from 7:15am-8pm on week days. There are also local restaurants/cafes near by and easy access to the town centre.
        • Vending machine
      • Consultant presence
        • Consultants are on the ward 96.0 hours per week (57.1%)
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      • Contact information
      • How to book once you're pregnant
        Via your GP
        • Booking phone number: 0192 321 7339 ext. 7501
        • If in labour call: 0192 321 7343 ext. 7371
        Book online
      • Outside space
        • There is no outside space available for women in labour
      • Visiting information
        • Visiting as for the postnatal ward
        • Partners and own children: 8am-9pm
          Other relatives, friends: 1.30-3pm and 7-8.30pm
      • Car parking for women in labour
        • 30 minute drop-off bays outside the women and children's block where maternity is situated.
        • Drop off outside entrance maximum 30 minutes stay
      • Parking
        • Charging applies 24 hours, Monday - Sunday. Tickets expire at midnight on day of purchase.
          Up to 30 minutes: free (in designated bays)
          Up to 1 hour: £2.00
          1-2 hours: £4.00
          2-3 hours: £6.00
          3-4 hours: £8.00
          4-6 hours: £12.00
          6-24 hours: £15.00
          Weekly ticket: £20.00; please note that some patient concessions are available.
      • Temporary closures
        • Number of times this unit was closed between Apr 2015 - Apr 2016: 1
        • Reason for closure: for 3 hours due to being full (at the time of the Birthing centre refurbishment)
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