Excellent article in the Guardian about the National Childbirth Trust. The NCT have found that some hospitals are paying 5K to allow access to companies to come on to antenatal wards to sell their wares; photographs of babies, free samples of nappies, etc.
I have complained about this before, in my own antenatal care. I was aghast that these commercial operations were allowed onto wards at all; you can’t keep wards confidential but it isn’t fair to allow salespeople to parade in and out when women are having babies, learning to feed, recovering. I was told that patients generally wanted this and that I was being oversensitive. I wish now I’d made more of a fuss.
In fact I think the problem is deeper and more insidious. The Royal College of GPs is ‘associated’ with Emma’s Diary, the contents of which I find patronising and generally odious. It is sent to GP surgeries and given to women when they tell their doctor they are pregnant. It follows, diary-style, a pregnancy, and it is choc-full of adverts for everything you don’t really need; last time I looked there was nothing about cotton nappies, for example, and everything about the most expensive pushchairs, prams, and etc. This kind of pressure isn’t fair.
I am an RCGP member and embarrassed by Emma’s Diary. I think that useful information about pregnancy is best done without adverts. I have complained about it twice; my first complaint seemed to get lost, and in my second complaint, I was told that no one much apart from me was bothered.
But I don’t think I’m alone. I think that there must be other women out there who would prefer straightforward, evidence based information about pregnancy and childbirth without adverts.
PS This closes it; Emma’s Diary online has a celebrity baby page. I am overwhelmed with horror http://www.emmasdiary.co.uk/latest-news/baby-news/index.aspx