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Old 18.07.2010, 00:18
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Moving antenatal care from UK to Zürich

Hello all,

I have been resident in Zurich but employed in the UK for the past year or so; my husband is full-time in Zurich. I am pregnant now, baby due in December, and since I have been working in the UK I have had my antenatal care there. My job is now winding down, and I'm planning to have the baby in Switzerland, and am trying to figure out two things:

1) What is the best point in pregnancy to move my care? I'm still travelling back and forth a lot so I've got some flexibility here, but I won't be in the UK anymore from 1 October so I'll have to have moved my care by then.

Relatedly,

2) What is the general pattern of antenatal care in Switzerland, or Zurich in particular? How often do you see the doctor/midwife, when do you get the scans, what testing is done, etc? Do you go see a GP first, or a midwife, or a clinic, or what? I've seen a lot on this board about birth and about insurance matters, but I'm really just wondering what the usual pattern of antenatal appointments ins.
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Old 18.07.2010, 00:28
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Re: Moving antenatal care from UK to Zürich

2) I see a gynocologist from 8 weeks on, every month, for a urine test, BP test, weight measure, and echo and general follow up. Later on, it is more often, but then it is done by a midwife in the same practice, and the gyno comes if something needs doublechecking. The last month I think you visit every week, but I am not 100% sure.

1) I would move the care as soon as you can, since you might want to do prenatal classes, and it is nice to complete them in one country.

I have the same questions you asked for you though, as I am moving from CH to the UK, and am wondering if the level of care in the last months is similar!! So what would your follow ups involve if you had stayed in the UK until the birth?
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Old 18.07.2010, 01:05
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Re: Moving antenatal care from UK to Zürich

Thanks for that! When do the ultrasound scans get done, if any? There are two normally in the UK, at 12 and 20 weeks. They've also booked me for a third one at 24 weeks to check that my placenta is growing properly, based on the results of some blood tests. I'm trying to figure out whether I could convince the Swiss system to give me the 24 week scan on my EHIC, or whether I should plan to switch after that scan.

As for British care, the pattern is something like this:
10 weeks - booking in appt. with midwife
12 weeks - dating scan (also nuchal translucency test if you are testing for Down's)
16 weeks - midwife appt.
20 weeks - anomaly scan
25 weeks - GP/midwife appt. if first pregnancy
28 weeks - midwife appt.
31 weeks - GP/midwife appt. if first pregnancy
34 weeks - midwife appt.
36 weeks - midwife appt.
38 weeks - GP/midwife appt.
40 weeks - midwife appt. if first pregnancy
...then weekly until you have the kid.

Good luck with the move!
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Old 19.07.2010, 12:23
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Re: Moving antenatal care from UK to Zürich

Hi

I think you should move your care as soon as possible.

The care here is fantastic and if you're ever in doubt about anything, you can always call the midwife/ doc and reassure you.

This is my second pregnancy, I'm 18wks (also due in Dec) and so far I've had 4 scans. I have another scan at 22wks and then I think my next scan will be about 8 weeks later. I see my doctor every 4-5 weeks and each time I have my blood tested (iron), urine, bp, weight and depending on the stage of pregnancy I've had additional blood tests. Towards the end of the pregnancy I see my doctor ever 2 weeks.

The doctor I see is actually the doctor who delivers my baby so I have no need to meet with the MW, although I did go to have a look around the hospital so I met quite a few of them. The MWs were all lovely and very supporting through the birth. I was given lots of support and encouragement, kept informed of everything what was happening and they even came to visit me on the day I was leaving.

The amount of scans you have depends on your doctor and on your insurance company. A few of my friends had basic insurance and they had about 3-4 scans in total. x
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Old 28.07.2010, 11:00
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Re: Moving antenatal care from UK to Zürich

I've moved my care after the 28th week from UK to Zürich which worked actually quite well for me (so far, I'm due in September). The last midwife appointment in the UK was at 28 weeks (including blood tests etc.), the first appointment at the clinic in Zürich (Triemli hospital) at 32 weeks, the next will be at 36 weeks. So usually you'll have an appointment every 4 weeks up to 36 weeks and after that every 2 weeks. Just make sure you book your appointments at the clinic or a doctor (not GP but Frauenarzt) and your antenatal class at the clinic well in advance.

They have made a scan at my first appointment in Zürich just to make sure everything is alright and to have some up-to-date information about my pregnancy in their database so they don't need to rely entirely on my UK maternity notes.
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Old 31.07.2010, 22:25
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Re: Moving antenatal care from UK to Zürich

Thanks for that! I suppose the best thing to do would be to call Triemli and see what they would advise me to do...
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Old 02.08.2010, 17:22
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Re: Moving antenatal care from UK to Zürich

Just to record how this has progressed...

I called the clinic at the Universitätsspital this afternoon. After a confusing sequence of unannounced transfers (I swear every woman who picks up a phone there sounds IDENTICAL, and so there was a lot of mutual confusion when I didn't realize that I needed to start explaining all over again) I have an appointment there in a week.

Just to make matters more 'interesting', I'm officially employed in the UK (and therefore paying taxes there, and therefore on the NHS with an EHIC, and also exempt from Swiss health insurance) until the end of September. So not only am I taking my medical case notes, I'm also taking my EHIC, my Ausländerausweis, the letter confirming my insurance exemption, and the UK contract of employment. We'll see what they do with this overload of documentation.

They have booked me for a scan and a checkup, so if they can do this 'placental growth / blood flow' scan as part of the general scan, I will be able to cancel my NHS appointments and spare myself a trip back to the UK. Fingers crossed...
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Old 02.08.2010, 17:52
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Re: Moving antenatal care from UK to Zürich

Good luck with your first appointment here. If you need any help of a maternity nurse (trained in UK) after the baby is born, let me know. I'll be happy to offer my services.
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Old 04.08.2010, 13:06
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Re: Moving antenatal care from UK to Zürich

Thanks! Will keep that in mind...
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Old 04.07.2011, 18:14
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Re: Moving antenatal care from UK to Zürich

Hi all,

Am kinda in the same boat myself. Am currently 21 weeks and need to know where to go from here. Some people have said to call an Ob-Gyn, others have said to contact a hospital directly....any further advice on this front?

I live in Meilen, close enough to Zurich, so would really like to know of any recommendations for Drs/Hospitals etc.

Also, do some hospital have more english-speaking staff than others? From what I have been told, most Drs will speak english but not midwives?

Any recommendations for english-language ante-natal classes?

Throwing too many questions at you, I know!

Annie
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Old 05.07.2011, 08:01
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Re: Moving antenatal care from UK to Zürich

You might consider Spital Uster. I recently had a baby there and my roommate during my stay lived near Meilen. It is a smaller hospital, so I believe you get more personal attention there (i.e. you at least recognize the staff each time there's a shift change), and I was very satisfied with the level and quality of care I received.

As for the doctor, I would contact an OB-Gyn first. I just have basic insurance, so I knew that my doctor would not be attending the birth, but I was able to have the final two appointments (when my pregnancy lasted 10 days after the due date) at the hospital, so I was familiar with some of the staff there before the birth. Most spoke English or at least enough to get by, though I did ultimately end up speaking primarily German. But I've known others who got by without German.

And for the record, I had scans at every doctor's appointment, though I don't believe they were always billed as official scans for the insurance. I think this is common here.
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Old 05.07.2011, 09:05
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Re: Moving antenatal care from UK to Zürich

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Also, do some hospital have more english-speaking staff than others? From what I have been told, most Drs will speak english but not midwives?
Many midwives do speak English, often excellently. I have come across just as many that do as doctors. In my personal, and very limited, experience of comparing a few UK midwives with a few Swiss midwives I found that the Swiss ones appeared better educated and more competent.

Best to just ask at the hospital how many of them speak English and what are the chances of one of them being on duty when you go into labour. If it's really essential to you that you have an English speaking midwife then you may want to consider hiring an English speaking doula who will guarantee that she will be with you.
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