Brief Excursion: A visit to a maternity hospital

A reporter visits a maternity hospital (University College) to interview the staff and patients, and observes the care that is being undertaken, including some cookery lessons. The programme ends with a seven-minute description of the birth of a baby. It's all managed by the doctor, nurse and midwife, and seems to pass by rather peacefully.

Before the NHS existed, there was a charge to have a baby delivered of approximately one shilling and sixpence. Ante-natal classes were not introduced until the 1960s while routine ultrasound scans didn't arrive until the 1970s.

In 1948, women rarely returned to work after having a baby, as there was no maternity pay and no obligation for employers to keep their jobs open.

Recorded circa 1953.

More archive things

Doctors' views on NHS, 1954
The creation of the NHS
Society and welfare