Joey came along with me so that he would know how to get there when the big day arrives. We decided to use the local government hospital in our district for a few reasons. First, we'd heard that the government hospitals here are really very good. In fact, when OB patients have complications at the private hospitals, they are often transported to the local hospital in their district.
Secondly, there is a great difference in price between a government hospital and a private hospital. For example, the Matilda Hospital, where my OB delivers has a birth package that starts at 50, 000 HK dollars (barring any complications during birth). At the Chai Wan Pamela Youde Eastern Nethersole Hospital, the cost of having a baby and staying two days is around 1,000 HK dollars. The care is just as good, but perhaps there is less pampering and privacy. Privacy and pampering are two things that I gave up when I had baby number one!
Finally, we needed to pick a hospital that was close by. Given the fact that my labor with Ella was a total of 3 hours, I wanted to make sure I arrived to the hospital in enough time. Matilda is located way up at the Peak. Not close. Our local hospital is 10 minutes (at tops 15 minutes) away. Much better! We had to make this decision fairly early on. To book a room in a private hospital, I would have had to make a down payment (around 20,000 HK) when I was only 5 weeks pregnant! This is due to the fact that many mainland mothers come to HK to deliver their babies. So there is high demand.
Anyhow--I was impressed with my visit today. The system was very organized and efficient. People were very kind and professional. We were handed some vital reading to do - which we skimmed while we waited. And it proved to be some entertaining reading due to the direct translation of Chinese to English. Similar to Ella's progress report, the word choice and syntax made for some humorous reading.
Let me share some of the highlights:
Mostly, the instructions for Joey provided the most chuckles. Here are some things he needs to watch for...
Come to the hospital for delivery if there is either "show," intermittent birth pain or leaking of liquor.
Here are some other tips for Joey...
Hold her hands while she is in pain.
Encourage your wife to bear down with all her strength synchronously with the uterine contractions.
In between contractions, you can wipe off her sweats.
Firm hold on her arm during the contractions signifies support.
Since the delivery is being conducted with a sterile technique, we would appreciate if you do not touch any of the sterile drapes or instrument.
Once the baby is delivered, hugging and kissing your wife express your love and gratitude towards her.
And for both of us...
We sincerely hope that this experience will give you and your wife a most pleasant memory.
I think it will.