Pregnant mums are receiving DIY birthing kits because Doctor’s fear they won’t make it to hospital in time.

Closed maternity wards across rural Queensland means mums are being forced to drive hundreds of kilometres and between two and four hours to their nearest functioning hospitals, simply too far for many to make it before giving birth, shares Courier Mail.

The birthing kits contain gloves, umbilical cord clips and alcohol wipes — are being handed out in a desperate unofficial measure to give mums a chance to deliver their babies in the shocking and growing number of births beside the road.

But doctors and nurses say the DIY birth kits won’t help mums who experience complications during labour and the wards at local hospitals need to be staffed and reopened.

One rural nurse, who wished to remain anonymous, said it was common for GPs and doctors at hospitals to give women the “basics” of a DIY kit so they’re not left in the lurch.

“It’s intended as a last resort,” she said.

“It is good to know that women have a standby if things start to happen earlier than intended.

“It’s (kits) probably a lot more under the radar these days.”

GP obstetrician John Hall, who has worked extensively in maternity across the Darling Downs, said he was aware of kits being distributed on a case-by-case basis at Dalby Hospital.

“This whole issue of people birthing on the side of the road, needing these kits is only going to get worse if the government don’t commit to keeping these services open and right now we’re in the situation where they’re shutting Chinchilla,” Dr Hall said.

“Just having a kit where she can clamp and cut off the cord, is not going to save the baby’s life if she has a major complication, it’s not going to save her if she has a major bleeding complication,” he said.

Women are often being forced to move, which often means leaving their families, from around 36 weeks so they can be near a hospital before they are due to give birth.

It is crazy!

Share your comments below.

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  • Goodness, the need for these services is so important!!

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  • So important that these services do stay open !!
    As long it’s clear these kits are as a last resort, but indeed just having a kit where she can clamp and cut off the cord, is not going to save the baby’s life if she has a major complication and it’s not going to save her if she has a major bleeding complication !

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  • Very interesting read

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  • The same problem is happening in some SA Outback towns. There is no Aenethitist if needed in an emergency so they can’t do an emergency C-Section. Sometimes RFDS are not able to cope with all the emergency calls they get. Their plane and crew can be out on an emergency when more calls come in. A lot of expectant Mums are either going to large country areas where there are big hospitals or going to their capital city. Sometimes Premature babies are flown from large country hospitals to city hospitals.

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  • a very interesting article

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  • This is appalling – doctors should not feel they need to do this in Australia.

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  • It’s great as a precautionary measure if people actually read the whole article. Just hope they don’t need to use it

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  • Scary and awful for those who aren’t in a position to move closer for four weeks before the baby is due.

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  • How scary to think you might not make it to hospital in time. Personally if I lived remotely I would stay somewhere closer to the hospital in the weeks before giving birth. But I know for many this wouldnt be practical or affordable.

    Reply

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