View Full Version : Private versus Public in the Hills Area (NSW)
Although I am not yet pregnant, I have questions that I hope someone will be able to help me with...
Myself and my husband joined a health fund last year as we were told that if we wanted to go private when we had a baby, we would need to be joined up 1 year before conception. So we joined. Alas no baby yet.
We are now reevaluating the decision to go private. Has anyone any advice/stories they can share to help make my mind up? Should we go private all the way, private in a public hospital, or straight out public?
The hospital's I will be considering when the time comes is Westmead Private or Baulkham Hills Private, or Westmead Public. Has anyone been to these hospitals, and what do you think?
Your help would be much appreciated!
I live in Cherrybrook and gave birth to my son Charlie 4 months ago at Royal North Shore Public Hosptial in the Birth Centre (natural option). The care and support was second to none. Like you I upgrading my health cover to including the birth, however I fell pregnant earlier than expected so wasn't eligible in the waiting period. I still considered paying full freight for private however I did my research before deciding and really couldn't see the benefit of spending many thousands of dollars opting for private. I also had spoken to many women who had chosen private the first time and public the second time....to me that was a good sign the public system was quite good.
I am not familiar with Westmead or Baulkham Hills Hospital but Charlie has unfortunately been admitted to Westmead Childrens before - if the Children's Hosptial is anything to go by - their facilities and care were great. The one thing I would check is whether they are able to cater for emergencies (ie. administer epidurals or perform ceasarians if required)....I had a friend at Ryde Hospital and things didn't go to plan so they transferred her by ambulance to another hospital in the middle of labour because they couldn't give epidurals. Just good for peace of mind!
Hope this helps.
Elle & Charlie.
Hi Elle and Charlie
I am also booked in at Royal North Shore Birth Centre (am due on 6 June) and am really pleased to hear that you had such good things to say. So far I have found the midwives there fantastic and I'm feeling really good about having bub there. Like you, I fell pregnant earlier than expected and weighed up the pros and cons of paying for private - I just couldn't justify the cost (after all what I spend on that, I can't spend on the baby) and although I was confident in my decision, its great to hear of someone else with positive things to say. I think private medicine is great, but I also think that people forget that on the whole pregnancy and for the majority of people childbirth is actually a natural thing and while this is a massive generalisation private obs tend to take a more clincial view
Cristina - good luck with whatever you decide. :)
I am booked in at Westmead Public, due 24/5/05. The antenatal clinic is run alongside another couple of clinics so can get quite busy but all in all it has been okay. The longest I have had to wait for my appointment was 1 3/4 hours but that only happened once and it turned out the midwife who ran my clinic went home sick on that morning so another midwife was seeing her ladies hence the delay. All other times I have been in and out within an hour. The midwives are lovely (I have met 5 of them for different reasons - glucose test, blood tests, ultrasounds, my sick midwife etc). I have seen the same midwife for my actual check-ups the whole way through my pregnancy which I think is good as even if they are not on shift when you deliver it is a constant throughout the lead up. The only thing I have found that is a bit annoying is they are not as forthcoming with reading material and free flowing information as my midwife (at Royal Womens, Randwick) was with my first but maybe that is because it is my 2nd.
Obviously I haven't had bub yet so I can't tell you how the labour and maternity wards measure up but I will let you know after I have my bub. You might need to send me a message to remind me because it could be hectic for a week or 2 when I get home.
Good luck with your decision. And have fun trying to concieve :D !!
I have been checking for responses to my query for one week now, and was about to give up as I knew the questions I asked were pretty specific (i.e. Hills Area hospitals), but you guys have come through for me! Thank you.
I am now leaning towards going public, although I had never considered Royal North Shore Hospital which I will now.
Schmell I will write to you after your birth and see how you fared - hope all goes well!
Again, thanks for your replies...
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