Some time ago I blogged about covering another midwife’s clinic and a woman I saw there who had me jumping through hoops. There is now an update on her demands and shows that I was right to be cautious about her. Yesterday I had a meeting with her midwife, M, as I am taking over responsibility for the homebirth stats. As we hadn’t spoken since I covered the clinic I mentioned ‘Mrs Media’ to her and what a right, royal PITA she was. M then bought me up to date. The birth centre she had chosen to go to, this was the transfer booking I had torn my hair out arranging, has now closed due to staff shortages*. So now Mrs Media has booked for yet another hospital, even though the unit the birth centre was an off-shoot from would take her there. This is now 4 or 5 bookings for different units, heaven knows what the costs are for all this changing her mind. I knew the woman would be cross what had happened so what M told me next came as no huge surprise, Mrs Media has written a letter of complaint to our manager. Her anger has been directed at her G.P surgery, incompetant, behind the times is the verdict on them, and also against M, unprofessional. Apparently I have come out smelling of roses but she has also quoted me, ‘the stand in’, as saying that M was a bad midwife. Totally untrue and not something I would say to a patient anyway. When I had left M I phoned our manager so that I could put the record straight and let her know what a PITA the woman is in, unfortunately she was not around, so I’ve sent her an E-Mail, no response yet.
* When Trusts announce that they have closed a birth centre due to staff shortages they should really tell the whole story, the staff shortages are not at the Birth Centre, they are within the obstetric unit. Birth Centres have no problems recruiting and retaining staff, some obstetric units do though so in order to fill vacancies, cover maternity leave, or fill in for staff on long term sick they will pull midwives away from the birth centre and then end up having to close it ‘due to staff shortages’.