Seven Kings woman gives birth in hospital corridor
PUBLISHED: 16:00 27 November 2011 | UPDATED: 09:46 28 November 2011
A Seven Kings woman gave birth in a public area of a hospital in front of horrified onlookers after midwives sent her home an hour earlier – telling her she wasn’t ready to have her baby.
Queen’s maternity matron Sabah Abdin’s response to the corridor birth
“Mrs Abdulla had been on the maternity unit for more than eight hours and her labour was not progressing.
“We carried out a CTG scan which showed that she was not in established labour.
“Our consultant suggested she might want to go home for a while, and she agreed.
“Mrs Abdulla told me that when she tried to return to Queen’s when her contractions became stronger, she was stuck in traffic for a considerable time.
“Fortunately she reached the hospital in time for our midwives to help her with the birth.
“We did our best to ensure that she had as much privacy as possible in the circumstances, and screened off the area.
“We have not received a complaint from Mrs Abdulla about the care she received, and I am delighted that she and her baby are doing well.”
Mother-of-six Najma Abdalla, of Charlbury Gardens, says she was propped on a table and seats near the first floor lifts at Queen’s Hospital, Romford, when the baby slipped into the arms of Najma’s sister Fatima Abukar, 22.
Around 15 people watched the drama, including one mum-to-be who was left “in tears” by the sight, said Fatima.
It comes just two weeks after watchdog the Care Quality Commission reported mums and babies were at risk of “poor clinical care” at the maternity unit.
“My sister couldn’t walk any further and laid down,” said Fatima, also of Seven Kings.
“She kept pulling up her skirt and she was speaking in broken sentences because she was in so much pain.
“I had my arms around her, trying to shield her from everyone. Then a woman looked under her skirt and said ‘I can see the baby’s head!’.”
Fatima was cradling the newborn boy when a group of passing midwives finishing their shift took over, wrapping him in his mother’s headscarf and jumper.
Screens were also erected to give the family some privacy.
Fatima said: “It was the scariest thing I’ve ever done and I’m angry that it happened. It was humiliating for my sister.”
Najma had arrived at the hospital’s A&E at around 4am on Tuesday, but was ordered home just after 1pm because she was not in “established labour”, Queen’s said.
“This is Najma’s sixth child, so she knew it was on the way and told them so,” said Fatima “But they frightened her into leaving, telling her she could pick up an infection and it wasn’t a pleasant place to stay.”
The 30-year-old housewife was rushed back less than an hour later, but was unable to make it to the labour ward.
Najma said: “It was not good. I was very angry at the time, but the baby and I are fine now. I will be making a complaint to the hospital.
“I’d heard things about this hospital and I didn’t want to come here.”
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