Change in Wollongong Hospital's Birth Policy to include baby & mother centred care..
Out of 200 women who shared their experience of giving birth at Wollongong Hospital, 89 per cent said they had been separated from their newborns. Nine out of 10 of those women reported trauma, anxiety or negative emotions during separation.
Thank you to everyone who spoke out about this. It's helping change policy and culture at Wollongong hospital. And you have yourselves and this amazing organisation at Better Births Illawarra to thank.
A few weeks ago, you might remember I shared a post from Better Births Illawarra asking for your personal experiences in regards to caesarean sections and skin to skin experiences at Wollongong Hospital. They had a huge response from you all about your own personal experiences and were able to report their findings to encourage and promote the importance of change to our current hospital policies in regard to this area. It was clearly evident in these findings that as a whole, we are unhappy with our experiences. Women are being affected by this and the inconsistency of the treatment that they're getting in hospital, and that they're having to really fight to get access to the best possible care.
I was lucky enough to of been able to attend the meeting to listen to lots of discussion on the findings with Dr Henry Murray, (the new head of Gynecology and Obstetrics at Wollongong Hospital) as well as several other key roles from the hospital, Amelia ( The Illawarra Doula ), Alyssa (Cherish Birth) and many other passionate women such as myself. Dr Murray made it very clear that the changes needed to be made were imminent and that it is currently at the top of the agenda.
It was made mention that the World Health Organisation (WHO) recommends newborn babies "should be kept in skin-to-skin contact with their mothers during the first hour after birth to prevent hypothermia and promote breastfeeding".
The organisation endorses breastfeeding "as soon as possible after birth", but according to the Federal Department of Health only 24 per cent of maternity facilities in Australia are accredited under the UNICEF/WHO Baby Friendly Hospital Initiative that supports this approach. This is definitely the goal.
Along with the renovations in the birth suite and the extention of the MGP program, these amazing women are starting to feel they are being heard. The changes are slow, but they are happening.
If you are interested in taking part in these meetings, or following along the progress of this area, please go ahead and support this small organisation who are making a really big impact!