A woman had to give birth at home without medical assistance because there were no beds available in an NHS hospital.
The 41-year-old was late at 40 weeks and four days pregnant and was awaiting an appointment at QA Hospital in Portsmouth, Hants, so that her labor could be induced.
However, the couple claimed they ‘couldn’t get an initiation appointment’ after learning the maternity ward was full and there were no beds to accommodate Angharad.
The mother-of-two said: “I was scared. We couldn’t get an induction. We were waiting another week until 42 weeks. We had to wait for her to come naturally.”
But Angharad and Paul’s baby decided to make a surprise appearance without the need for induction, after just over two hours of labour.
Her husband called the NHS Labor Line, who told them to go to the hospital.
Paul said: “We took her down. We started going out the door. At that point she came through the door and two seconds later she was turning around and saying, ‘It’s too late. , it happens “.
“She comes home and my parents arrived because they were taking care of my son. We were going to get in the car as soon as they arrived.
“They said they would send an ambulance as soon as they could get one for free.”
Angharad added: “I thought the baby was going to come and fall on the concrete outside as we got in the car. I went straight back.”
As Paul was on the phone with the midwife, he saw baby Esmae’s head “pop out” while the family was in the living room.
He said: “[Esmae] sort of fall into my hands on the pillow. My mom dove in and tried to grab it and give it to Aggie.”
Angharad gave birth to Esmae, weighing 7lbs 8oz, just 18 minutes before an ambulance crew arrived.
During the ‘unassisted birth on arrival’, the second mother delivered her baby without gas or air or any other pain relief, prompting paramedics and midwives to be in disbelief.
Paul said when Angharad was taken to hospital for postnatal care, they had not seen a case like hers in over 22 years.
“When she was brought in with the baby, the midwives couldn’t believe it,” admitted Paul.
A spokesperson for the NHS Trust at the University of Portsmouth Hospitals, responsible for the QA hospital, commented on its care for pregnant patients.
They said: “Pregnant women are urged to contact the labor line when they think they are in labour.
“The labor line covers the Hampshire area and will direct people to the nearest hospital that has a maternity bed available.
“Pregnant people will always be treated at the nearest hospital whenever possible, but when there are occasions when a hospital is full, treatment may be provided at another hospital in the area and travel additional may be required.
“While we try to accommodate home births wherever possible, it still depends on our ability to provide safe care at home and also in hospital.
“No pregnant woman is denied maternity care.”