There is no messing around for women who give birth at Murwillumbah District Hospital. They are outta there quicker than lightening.

Mums can be expected to be discharged  just four hours after delivery if everything goes well.

One of the conditions of the hospital’s birthing service continuing to operate without its postnatal ward.

Overnight stays will be reserved for those with medical complications or who have delivered during the night.

A Northern NSW Local Health District spokeswoman said the four to six-hour standard was common among hospitals with low-risk caseloads.

“In consideration of these women being at low risk and remaining at low risk during the labour, birth and immediate postnatal period, this is an accepted length of stay,” the spokeswoman said.

“The mother is then provided with home visits by her own caseload midwife, who supports her through the antenatal, birth and postnatal period for up to six weeks.”

Labor health spokesman Walt Secord said mothers around NSW were being “ushered” out of hospital to achieve a higher bed turnover.

“Young mums – especially first-time ones – need postnatal support and rushing them out of hospital is unacceptable,” Mr Secord said.

“The common view is that young mums and babies stay for around 48 hours.

“Nurses have told me about local health district bureaucrats putting pressure on them to discharge new mums as early as possible. In some cases, it can be as little as two hours, if the mum and the baby are healthy.”

NSW hospitals are encouraged to discharge women between four and 48 hours after they deliver

One midwife argues that postnatal services were “incredibly important”.

“It’s great for women who don’t want to be there but there’s still that percentage of women who either can’t go home or don’t feel comfortable going home.

“They’re first-time mothers, they don’t have experience of breastfeeding, they might not have family at home.”

How long was your hospital stay after the birth of your little ones?  Share your story below.

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  • Wow that is crazy what if the mum needs more support or has issues with feeding


  • That’s unbelievable. With my first I was privet and had 5 days, with second 2 days, with3 I left the next morning and with 4th I left 2nd day. Four hours is not long enough.


  • I was in hospital for one night before the birth and five days after the birth. I was having problems breastfeeding and was grateful for all the help and support I received from the nurses.


  • if there is no complications for mum or baby then sometimes home is a much better place to bond than a cold sterile hospital bed shared with other mums, visitors and minimal privacy with constant nurse interruptions


  • That should not be allowed. Complications such as bleeding and infection can arise 6 hours or later after birth.


  • I am amazed that this quick turnaround is allowed in Australia – some issues following birth only develop in the following 24 hours and knowing that you are in a supported environment in hospital really helps. Lets hope these mums go home to well supported environment – no washing, cleaning, cooking or other distractions in sight – I think not! Caseload home visits are not the same. I was in hospital for 3 days and found having a variety of staff on hand to ask questions of, as and when needed, was great.


  • 2-4 hours is simply not long enough. With my first, I discharged myself after 2 1/2 days. I had no complications, I was feeding well, I knew how to change and bathe baby. Number 2 I was told I had to stay in for 7 days :/ No problems here either, but I didn’t argue as I used the rest before heading home to a rowdy toddler. You need more then. 2-4 hours though, even with follow up care afterwards


  • Different hospital but I had a horrible time with nasty midwives when I had my daughter. I couldn’t wait to get home but I honestly was not ready and would not have coped having to go home just 4 hours after giving birth!! Might be ok for second, third etc time mums but first time it’s all new and you do need a bit of guidance and reassurance before going home.


  • Very few people want to be there, people want to be home but only when it is safe.


  • my first was a long stay because she was having difficulties latching on, I think I was there for a full 5 days but I was dying to get home. With the second I was there for a couple of days because she was induced due to complications – I couldn’t wait to get out of there and get back home – I guess it all depends on what happened in the labour and how well mum and bub are doing, but you shouldn’t be forced to go until your ready I think


  • Baby 1, I had a 6 night stay for caesarean. I should have stayed longer as I had complications, & back in hospital two weeks later, but I was desperate to go home.
    Baby 2, 3 night stay & no pressure to leave.
    Baby 3, 3 night stay. He was born in the car on the way to the hospital, and I was ready to leave after he was checked out ok, but the hospital wouldn’t let us because they classed it as a traumatic birth, being there was no medical staff present.
    Baby 4, 2 night stay and no pressure to leave (but I was high risk for this bub).


  • I stayed 3 days after my c section instead of the recommended 5. I couldn’t wait to get home


  • i have always gone home as soon as possible! i have usually had babies in the early morning and would be out of there by midday


  • If you can then great, as long as they aren’t pushing you out the door. I would have gone home after 6 hours if my baby hadn’t of needed an extra stay.


  • I had a post haemorrhage (was still in hospital) and I certainly would not have liked to have been home when that happened. This is where private health comes in handy, you can get transferred to the private hospital here.


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