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Newport couple thank the 999 call handler who supported them through birthing their baby over the phone

A NEWPORT couple has thanked the ambulance call handler who supported them through birthing their baby daughter at home.

When Charlotte Wright, 25, woke up at home in the early hours, she didn’t realise just how close she was to giving birth to her second child.

Charlotte, now a proud mother-of-two, woke up at around 3:20am feeling some discomfort, but quickly realised that she was actually in labour, with contractions just a few minutes apart.

Charlotte said: “When I realised what was happening, I woke my partner Adam to let him know it was time to go into hospital.

“We rang the maternity unit at the Grange University Hospital and they told us to come straight in, but it quickly became apparent that I wouldn’t be able to make the 25-minute journey to the hospital and it was at this point, that Adam called for an ambulance.”

At this point, Adam also rang Charlotte’s sister, Chloe to let her know she had gone into labour and to ask her to come over.

During the labour, Adam and Charlotte’s first child, two-year-old Alice, slept soundly, unaware that her little sister was about to make a very sudden and unexpected arrival.

Less than half an hour after Charlotte had first woken up, Adam called the Welsh Ambulance Service and was connected with 999 call landler Tommy Saracco-Jones, who is based in Llanfairfechan in North Wales.

Charlotte said: “I was in pain, holding my breath and feeling a little scared because I knew Nancy wasn’t waiting for anyone to arrive, she was coming out there and then.

“It was such a relief to have someone like Tommy on the phone, relaying instructions to me and Adam via my sister, Chloe, who was holding the phone and passing on everything Tommy was saying.”

Tommy said: “It became clear quite quickly that baby Nancy was going to birth at home and this was likely to happen before a crew could attend the property.

“I knew how important it was to remain calm and in turn, keep Adam and Charlotte calm while I talked them through everything they would need to do.”

Unbeknown to Charlotte, her sister Chloe was aware that an ambulance was unlikely to arrive before baby Nancy was born but decided not to pass that information on, instead telling Charlotte that help was almost there as she knew this would help her to relax and focus on delivering Nancy.

Charlotte said: “Looking back, I’m glad my sister decided not to tell me as I think I would have been even more distressed if I had known that a crew was unlikely to arrive before I gave birth.

“Thinking that help would arrive soon really helped me to stay calm and just concentrate on delivering Nancy.”

After following instructions from Tommy, Adam got everything prepared, ready for Nancy’s arrival.

Adam, aged 26, said: “Tommy was fantastic and really kept us all so calm and reassured.

“He guided us through the entire process, step by step and in the end, what could have been a very scary and traumatising experience turned into a moment of real joy and happiness.”

Shortly after the birth of baby Nancy, a midwife arrived to check on her health and after satisfying herself that all was well, allowed Adam to cut the cord.

In fact, baby Nancy was so well that the family contacted the Welsh Ambulance Service to let them know that an ambulance would not be required after all and remarkably, after being checked over by the midwife, it was decided that mum and baby did not even need to go into hospital.
Bethan Jones, Local Safety Champion & Midwife at the Welsh Ambulance Service said: “The Trust is continuing to work with maternity and neonatal safety support programmes to ensure clear and consistent approaches to maternity and neonatal safety in the pre-arrival and pre - hospital setting.

“The pre-arrival advice that women and birthing people receive when ringing 999 is crucial to delivering high quality care from the time a 999 call is placed.

“The call handlers role is pivotal in this and Tommy was a great support to Charlotte and her family during and after the birth of Nancy.

“We are always delighted to hear the positive experiences of people that use our service and it is great that Charlotte, Adam, Alice and Nancy were supported by Maternity services and remained at home after the birth.”

Editor’s Notes

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