In Hospital

Isiit safe?

Hospi tal i s the safest place for mums-to-be who are cons i dered h i ghr i sk.Th i scould i nclude women who have med i cal cond i t ions,such as a heart problem, i nsul i n-dependent d i abetes, or problems dur ing pregnancy such as pre-eclamps i a, or premature b i rth. If i t's ant i c ipated that a woman or her baby w i llneed a h i gh level of med i cal care or a spec i al care baby uni t, a hospi tal i s the appropr i ate place to g i ve b i rth.

What are the pros?

• Obstetr i c i ans work i n the hosp i tal, wh i ch means that there are the fac ili t i esto look after women who need a h i gher level of i ntervent i on w i th the i r care.

• There's the fac ili ty to do i nstrumental (forceps/ventouse) deli ver i es or a caesarean.

• The fullrange of pai n reli ef opti ons are ava i lable, i nclud i ng ep i dural, wh i ch i s s i ted by an anaesthet i st.

• If you have other ch ildren at home, you may want a n i ght or two away i n hosp ital just w i th your new baby.

What are the drawbacks?

You're more likely to end up with interventions such as an episiotomy, instrumental delivery, caesarean section, a drip to speed up contractions, pain relief, and also have a higher risk of infection.

You're less likely to get one-to-one care or care from a midwife you know - midwives on the labour ward may have several women to look after.

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