Showing posts tagged with: 'baby'


Hot off the press

Thu 5th Jun 2008 by Ben Palmer.

Publication day is here. This time a year ago I was discussing what would make a suitable title for my book with my agent, prior to submitting a 30,000 word proposal to a handful of publishing editors.

Twelve months and 60,000 words later, it is in stock, on the shelves and on sale. Tomorrow there's a 3,000 word extract in a national newspaper and on Saturday another is printing an interview I did with them a couple of weeks ago. I can barely believe it's true.

Last night I went out for an extremely nice dinner with friends, stopping at their house for glass of champagne.

'Look children, it's Ben's book,' Sally said.
'Wow. You're famous,' was her son's response, before climbing over the fence to play in the neighbour's garden.

It'd be easy to enjoy the 'fame' but that's not why I wrote Friday's Child.

I emailed some friends earlier, to remind them that they could buy a copy if they felt inclined, and got a response back from someone I met directly because of Jessica's death.

His email read, 'Would you believe this morning I have been out for our first scan at 12 weeks – thanks so much for raising awareness of childbed fever on behalf of this prospective Dad!'

The book is dedicated to Harry and Emily, but it is on the shelves and in the press for all prospective Mums and Dads. That's why I did it and I hope it saves lives.

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Time for T

Mon 28th Apr 2008 by Ben Palmer.

A little over seven years ago, Jessica met a group of fellow first time pregnant girls at her first ante-natal class.

Two girls emigrated, but five of them went on going to the classes, every week for six weeks or so. The classes came to an end and one by one they gave birth within the space of a few weeks: four boys and a girl.

The five of them continued to meet every week, usually for lunch on Wednesdays, until the children started going to nursery school. The meetings became more irregular, but they stayed in touch and sometimes us Dads joined them for dinner. In the years since, the number of children has grown to eleven.

Since Jessica's death the girls have welcomed me into their group as an honorary Mum, and have supported me hugely in the years since. Her death could not have affected them more - they were such a close knit group.

Today we formed a new group of our own: Jessica's Trust is now formalised with the five of us as trustees. The change from 'trust' to 'Trust' in the masthead reflects this.

I am hugely grateful to the girls for agreeing to help me. There is much to be done, but first we apply to become a Registered Charity.

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Mum gives birth in car park

Wed 29th Aug 2007 by Ben Palmer.

Mum gives birth in car park because 'hospital didn't have midwife' from the Daily Mail

Unless the NHS can ensure adequate midwifery staff numbers and stop its ludicrous plans to close maternity units I fear this is going to happen more and more.

What the bureaucrats seem to forget is that childbirth is a traumatic experience for a mother and her child to go through and it is only safe when you have adequate levels of care in place.

There is going to be a tragedy if things don't change soon enough.

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Premature baby dies - Daily Mail

Fri 17th Aug 2007 by Ben Palmer.

I've just read this horrific story: Premature baby dies after mother has to deliver it herself in new hospital in the Daily Mail.

Where were the midwives that the health service so badly needs? When are we going to lose the initiatives, the spin, the New Labour hypocrisy and get a decent level of maternity care so that childbirth becomes as safe as we keep being told it is. How many more lives must be lost?

Hospital managers have to realise that 'sincere condolences' and 'being kept up to date with changes' is not a substitute for gold standard care. No amount of empty words will console this poor mother.

Rest in peace, Edward.

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Breast is best

Mon 6th Aug 2007 by Ben Palmer.

Although she found it hard to start with, Jessica loved breastfeeding Harry, and she continued to do so for six months.

Her biggest sadness when she first was admitted to hospital and was being giving a rich cocktail of drugs, was that she wouldn't be able to breastfeed Emily until she was better. It really upset her.

I was really touched and pleased to find that a fellow blogger has picked up on my website and Jessica's story, and is helping to spread the word.

Particularly in light of Jessica's belief in breast milk, it only seems fitting that I do the same.  I recommend both her blog and her post today to you.

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What is childbed fever?

Childbed fever is an infection of the womb in new mothers which can lead to septicaemia. If left untreated infection will cause organ failure and death - even in young, fit mothers.
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What are the symptoms? »
Childbed fever: the facts »

What's the aim?

We would like every parent and every midwife and doctor to know that childbed fever is still a very real threat to a mother's life.
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Can I help? »

Who is Jessica?

Jessica Palmer was a Mum. She died in June 2004, at 34 years old, of childbed fever caused by Group A streptococcus.
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This website contains general information about childbed fever. The information is not complete or comprehensive. You should not rely on the information on this website as an alternative to medical advice from your doctor or healthcare provider. If you have any specific questions about childbed fever (or any other medical condition) you should consult your doctor or other healthcare provider; and if you think you may be suffering from childbed fever (or any other medical condition) you should seek immediately medical attention. You should never delay seeking medical advice, disregard medical advice, or discontinue medical treatment because of information on this website.
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