First babies born at Barking Community Hospital
There were celebrations as two babies became the first to be born at Barking Community Hospital in more than 20 years.
Ethan White and Maximilian Maciek were brought into the world at the hospital’s new birthing centre in Upney Lane on Wednesday.
The mid-wife lead unit, set to deliver 200 babies a year, is for women who are having low-risk births but do not want to give birth in their own home or in a traditional hospital setting.
Ethan was the first child to be born at the site, run by Barts Health NHS Trust, since the closure of Upney Hospital in the early 90s.
His mum Jade, 22, of Eagle Avenue, Chadwell Heath, said: “I had my first child at Queen’s Hospital and the experience wasn’t great, but giving birth at the birthing Centre was fantastic.
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“The room was calming and the staff attentive. I was so much more relaxed than last time.”
Maximilian’s mum Shirina Islam, 35, of Blake Avenue, Barking, also praised the centre. She said: “This is my third child and giving birth at Barking Hospital was a more positive experience than my first two births.
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“The staff were really helpful and made me feel comfortable. My family were there too which was great.”
A number of GPs in Barking and Dagenham were instrumental in making the birthing centre plans a reality.
Chair of the local GPs group, Dr Waseem Mohi, said: “I am absolutely delighted that babies are being born in Barking again.”
“The GPs in Barking and Dagenham have worked hard to get the maternity service up and running in Barking Community hospital this year and we couldn’t stop smiling when we heard the news.”
Barking MP Margaret Hodge, who together with residents lead a campaign to get Barking Community Hospital open, met the two mums and their babies as she paid a visit to the hospital on Friday.
The centre also offers an antenatal clinic with ultrasound and blood testing services and post-natal mother and baby health check-up appointments.
Women interested in having their baby at the Barking Birthing Centre should to talk to their midwife or GP, or call 020 3288 2450.