Our Midwifery Experience

Jayde Kerr says personal touches around having a baby at Swan Hill made all the difference for her. 

“My first son was born at Bendigo, and we liked that experience. But I’d heard good things about the unit at Swan Hill, and we wanted to try that. It was the perfect decision… we had a wonderful experience.”

Speaking with us shortly after Oliver George’s birth, Jayde is full of praise for all the staff who work with newborns at Swan Hill District Health.

“The breast feeding support staff make all the difference– I wouldn’t be breastfeeding, if it wasn’t for them”. There is one thing Jayde wants us to tackle, but we will get to that.

Jayde and partner, Brett McClelland, live at Sea Lake, with son Declan. Living in an area without any midwifery services, they always knew they had to leave to have this baby.

Having decided on SHDH, she switched from seeing her GP to appointments at Swan Hill Midwifery  Ward. This meant she was more comfortable, because when she was admitted, she already knew some of the staff.

“It was good, too, because the Mid staff always made sure there was time for my appointments and took into account that I had to travel from Sea Lake,” she explains.

The COVID visitor restrictions changed as she came in to hospital. “I was worried I wouldn’t get to see my two-year-old before labour, but the changes meant he was allowed in,” she explained.

 “I’d give the hospital ten out of ten, especially our midwife”

Brett and Jayde say staff explained everything as they went along, and made sure they understood what was being done. 

The speed of Oliver’s arrival was a bit of a shock – Jayde was in labour for 12 hours with Declan, but his little brother arrived after just 90 minutes!

“It was the staff attitude and care that made all the difference – just after Oliver arrived, they made sure Brett and I were comfortable and even dimmed the lights before they left us alone with our new son – that was a very calm, special quiet time where we got to bond,” Jayde explains.

Two-year-old Declan didn’t have to do without Mum and Dad for too long. After such a short labour and with everything going so well, Jayde and Brett were home within two days, so they could introduce their sons.

“The only qualm I have is around newborn hearing screening… apparently the staff doing this come from Bendigo and Oliver’s test kept getting cancelled.

“In Bendigo, Declan was tested the day after he was born, but we had to wait eight weeks for Oliver to be tested. That causes some concern,” she says.

Thanks Jayde, we’ll take this to the powers that be, to see what can be done.

This story has been collected as part of the Swan Hill District Health Consumer Stories Project.
If you have a story to tell, or would like to share your experience, please contact the
Quality, Experience and Safety team on 03 5033 9894 or feedback@shdh.org.au