Mother has baby in car park after she is turned away from hospital that had 'run out of midwives'Ania's husband was told to drive her to a different hospital even though he didn't know the way

PUBLISHED:

15:01 GMT, 26 March 2012

|

UPDATED:

16:25 GMT, 26 March 2012

A mother-to-be was forced to have her baby in a hospital car park after being turned away from her local maternity ward because there were no spare midwives.

Ania Martin, 38, and her partner Dean were told to head to make the two-mile trip from Leeds General Infirmary to the nearby St James's Hospital in Leeds.

Baby drama: Dean and Ania Martin with their baby girl who was born in the car park at St James Hospital, Leeds

Baby drama: Dean and Ania Martin with their baby girl who was born in the car park at St James Hospital, Leeds

However, Ania's water's broke in the car and Dean had to call 999 after finding no one at St James's reception.

He was given step-by-step
instructions by emergency services staff – until a passing medic spotted
the drama and helped deliver the 6lb 11oz healthy baby girl safely.

Dean and Ania – both dental technicians
who already have a two-year-old son Jan – had already visited Leeds
General Infirmary at around 4pm last Wednesday when Ania's contractions
started.

Mr Martin, 39, said: 'They said there was
still some time to go and we could either wait or go home for a couple
of hours and ring ahead when we were on our way back.

'Our son had been at a childminder's all day so we decided to head home, sort him out and then come back.

'When we were on our way back later that
evening, I rang the ward to let them know, but they said they couldn't
take us because there was a shortage of midwives and the ward was full.

'They said I would have to go to St James's, but I told them I didn't know where it was.

'I was absolutely gobsmacked. I begged
and pleaded with them to help – I suggested I bring Ania to A&E so a
doctor could see her, or drop her off and they could take her in an
ambulance.

'Ania's first labour was really quick,
so I knew we didn't have much time. Her waters broke in the car and she
was telling me that she could feel the head – I was desperate, I just
wanted help from anyone. But the midwife on the LGI maternity ward told
me there was nothing she could do.'

Mr Martin said he was turned away by Leeds General Infirmary (pictured) even though staff had told them to return that evening

Mr Martin said he was turned away by Leeds General Infirmary (pictured) even though staff had told them to return that evening

It took Mr Martin 30 minutes to find St James's.

'I went to one wing, but by this time it was about 10pm and the reception was closed,' he said.

'I frantically drove to another ward, but this was closed too. I didn't know what to do, so I rang 999 and explained the situation.

'It was bizarre, I couldn't believe I was sitting outside a hospital calling 999 and delivering my own baby.'

Mr Martin said he was incredibly grateful to a medic who had spotted the commotion and run over to help.

'She helped me with the rest of the delivery, she was brilliant. I'm so grateful the medic was around to help out because I was terrified.

'We will certainly tease the baby about how she came into the world when she grows up. And we have been joking we are going to call her Silver Volvo Estate Martin.'

Both mother and baby are now at home and doing well, but Dean says he is 'disgusted' with the way they were turned away and will be lodging an official complaint with the Trust.

He added: 'I needed anybody to help me, but they just turned us away. I'm disgusted.

'How can a hospital be shut Especially when they told us earlier to come back, and they knew we would be.'

A spokesman for Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust said: 'The maternity unit apologises to Mrs Martin for being unable to deliver her baby at the Leeds General Infirmary site.

'We made provision for her at St James's and we thought she would get there in time. Ambulances are not routinely sent to women in labour but an investigation into circumstances around the birth will be undertaken and we would encourage Mrs Martin to contact us as soon as she feels able.'