Thomas Howard, 33, found himself delivering his partner’s baby without a midwife at the Royal Blackburn Hospital in Lancashire last week.
Thomas had arrived at the hospital half an hour after his partner, Emily Baron, 26, and asked the midwife if it was normal for her to be losing blood. The midwife left the couple and soon after Thomas saw his baby’s head appear. He pressed the buzzer but nobody arrived in time, according to reports.
“It happened quickly and I just had to go with it,” the dad-of-five told the Daily Express. “The baby was lying at the end of the bed and I was making sure she could breathe when the midwife came back in.”
Mum Emily and baby Madeline, who weighed 4lbs 15oz, are both doing well.
The National Childbirth Trust has described the events as an example of Britain’s midwife shortage.
“Being left alone in labour in hospital is unacceptable,” an NCT spokesperson commented. “Having a midwife with you when you give birth is vital to ensure there are no complications.”
“We will be looking very closely into what happened,” said Ruth Gildert, from the East Lancashire Hospitals NHS Trust, who issued an apology to the family for the distress they experienced when their baby was born.