Main telephone number:
020 8401 3000

Our birth centre has a homely atmosphere with individual rooms, beanbags, baths and birthing pools.

It is the ideal place for women who want to be close to hospital services, but want a relaxed, friendly, un-clinical place to have their baby.

"The birth centre is a hidden gem” Frankie

Our birth centre

Birth centre

The centre is set up for women with uncomplicated pregnancies who are expecting a straight-forward labour and birth. Women who choose the birth centre are more likely to have a normal birth.

Croydon University Hospital’s birth centre is within the maternity unit, next door to the hospital delivery suite. The birth centre offers sensitive, individualised midwifery care to women, who are not anticipating any problems, during their labour, and give birth to their babies in a relaxed home from home environment. Women are encouraged to move around through their labour, supported by skilled midwives and their choice of birth partners.

Evidence shows that women who give birth in a relaxed, non-medical environment, supported by a dedicated midwife, require less pain relieving drugs, and are more likely to progress through labour to achieve a normal birth with little need for medical procedures and all of our staff encourage and promote natural birth.

The birth centre is staffed by an experienced team of midwives, who also work in the local community and the adjoining delivery suite. Your midwife will support you throughout your labour and is also able to recognise if further medical support is needed. In these situations your midwife may recommend transferring you next door to the delivery suite team of doctors and midwives for on-going care.

“Thank you for an absolutely wonderful experience. I felt respected, in control and capable. The facilities are superb and we loved being there.” Hannah


 

Birth centre facilities

Birth centreThe beautiful facilities offer families a relaxed environment where you can start your journey into parenthood. There are three birthing rooms, two of which have birthing pools, and three postnatal rooms. The birthing rooms have birth pools, birthing couches, mood lighting, bean bags and floor mats, which we encourage you to use during your labour and birth if you wish. Your privacy is very important and all the birthing rooms have private en-suite bathrooms which you can use during your labour.

We encourage your family and friends to come to the birth centre to support you during this special time. There are no restrictions on visiting times as we want you to celebrate your birth with those who are close to you. Your birthing partner can also stay with you overnight after your baby is born, if you aren’t ready to go home. Your children are also welcome to visit the birth centre, but we are not able to allow them to stay overnight for safety and infection control.

After you have given birth, our midwives will support you with feeding your baby and help you with any questions you may have.

If you opt to have pain relief while giving birth, we can offer a range of options:

  • Hydrotherapy-use of water in the birthing pools
  • Active labour positions, using birthing balls, mats and bean bags
  • Gas and air (Entonox)
  • Pethidine injections
  • Massage
  • Hypnobirthing techniques supported
  • Women can also opt to bring their own TENS machine

Epidural’s are available on the delivery suite if needed, however, the evidence shows that continuous support from a midwife during labour is likely to decrease the need for a woman to request an epidural for pain relief.

We have a car park and drop off zone right next to our maternity unit. Click here for a map of the hospital. The maternity unit is in the green zone.


 

Is the Birth Centre recommended for you?

At the start of your pregnancy the midwife will agree with you as to what type of care you would like based on your preferences and previous medical and pregnancy history.

If you have no current or previous medical problems the midwife will recommend midwifery-led care for you, as you will not need to see a hospital doctor during your pregnancy. This will be continuously reviewed with you throughout your pregnancy.

We’d recommend the birth centre for you if:

  • Have an uncomplicated pregnancy
  • Are 37-42 weeks into your pregnancy
  • Your BMI is less than 35 at the start of your pregnancy
  • You are 16-40 years of age
  • You are not anaemic (iron level is more than 90 grams/dl)
  • Your baby has developed normally and is head down
  • Your waters break and are clear in colour

If you are unsure whether having your baby in the birth centre is the best place for you please discuss with your midwife. There will be some women who may not meet all of the criteria but would still like to have their baby in the centre. In this case, speak to your midwife and we can ensure you receive the right advice to make the choice that’s safe for you.

Supervisors of Midwives are also available to discuss any concerns or questions about choices available to you.