Stacey Dooley and her documentary film crew have faced backlash after filming a series in a maternity ward during the global coronavirus pandemic.
The reality TV star filmed a half an hour episode for BBC’s Panorama show at Bradford Hospital, entitled “Stacey Dooley and the Lockdown Babies”.
In it, she and her film crew can be seen roaming the ward as they interview various staff members and patients.
But people have called out Dooley’s access in the maternity ward when partners only have limited access themselves.
For example, during labour, a birthing partner is allowed in the room but visiting newborn babies after the birth is limited. The NHS website also says that if you’re pregnant and need an antenatal scan, “you may have to go on your own”.
The Bradford Hospital website specifically states:
MOST visiting has been suspended. Exceptions are for those receiving end-of-life care, one adult may visit a child, and one birthing partner can accompany women in labour.
In one interview during the episode, Dooley talks to Joe Longford, the partner of a woman who was due to be induced on that day of filming. He said:
It’s not the best that you have to let her go in and tackle it on her own to start with. More for her, than me… from my point of view, you just feel useless.
But viewers on social media questioned Dooley and her film crew’s access across the maternity ward, which sees them witness an emergency C-section and an interview with a coronavirus-infected new mother.
While others shared their own stories about being separated from their partners after the birth of their babies or during antenatal scans:
At the end of the episode, Dooley even went back to visit Longford and his newborn twins. She remarked:
Are you allowed to stay for a bit?
And he responded:
No. I think an hour or two.
During the episode, Dooley and a film crew watch an emergency C-section unfold (with permission from the mother).
Stacey Dooley and the Lockdown Babies is available to view in the UK via BBC iPlayer.