The Travels of Baby Jack…

baby jack

I worry about the NHS. Not locally, of course; our Worcestershire Hospitals do a great job. But you will have caught up on the news of a national shortage of neonatal specialist nurses across the country which has resulted in the temporary merger of the maternity units at the Alexandra Hospital and the Royal. And irrespective of the politics, there is always a human story.
So I was wondering around the hospital last Saturday when I bumped into my friend Rachel, a Palliative Care Nurse. As we were having a laugh and some banter, her friends Hannah and Martin appeared. I could tell that Hannah was pregnant – nothing gets past me. They were waiting for a neonatal bed to become free because their baby needed to be born early. “Hannah said that there was a neonatal bed free at the moment in Warwick; to which I joked that Martin could at least visit the Castle. “Or failing that,” said Hannah, “we might have to go to Norfolk!” I was shocked and thought I’d misheard, but no she really said Norfolk. Now I think the things you most want when you’re having a baby is to have a safe delivery and your loved ones around; the thought of being miles away from family was worrying.
Now it’s easy to blame people. Blame the doctors; the nurses; the management; the government. But I can tell you that everyone in the hospital was doing their best with the odds stacked against them.
I bumped into Martin a few days later and he told me that Baby Jack had been born weighing 4lbs 8oz without needing a neonatal bed. He is gorgeous, and I know that he will have a great future; I even got a cuddle with him. I also know that Hannah and Martin would have done anything they needed to in order to give Jack the best chance – yes even Norfolk. But on this occasion, I thank God it all worked out well and wish them all the best for the future.

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