All eyes are on Meghan Markle as she prepares to welcome her first child with Prince Harry later this year.
And while many had assumed she would automatically opt to give birth in the Royal favourite, Lindo Wing in St Mary’s Hospital, it’s been claimed the Duchess of Sussex could give birth to her first child at the same hospital as Sophie, Countess of Wessex instead.
The 37-year-old is said to be planning to have her baby at Frimley Park Hospital in Camberley, Surrey, according to Mail Online.
If Meghan were to choose to give birth in Frimley, it would be a stark comparison to Kate’s private hospital births. The Duchess of Cambridge delivered all three of her children at the Lindo Wing in Paddington, London.
A birth in Frimley Park Hospital makes more sense for Meghan and Harry, as they’re are set to move to Windsor imminently.
Frogmore Cottage is a 15-mile drive to Frimley Park Hospital, in comparison to the 23-mile journey to the Lindo Wing in London.
Meghan is due to give birth in spring, which means her baby could arrive as early as March or as late as June.
Sophie had both of her children Lady Louise Windsor, and James, Viscount Severn, now 15 and 11 respectively, at the NHS hospital.
The Countess of Wessex, now 53, has high praise for the staff Frimley Park, who saved her and her daughter Lady Louise’s lives.
On 8 November 2003, Sophie was rushed to the hospital from her and Prince Edward’s Bagshot Park home with crippling abdominal pains.
She showed signs of acute placental abruption (when the placenta separates early from the uterus) which can prove fatal to both mother and child.
Lady Louise was delivered by emergency caesarean section and the pair were cared for by staff until they were discharged from hospital on 23 November 2003.
Prices start at £5,900 for a one-night stay at the Lindo Wing and mums-to-be can also indulge in afternoon tea, gourmet meals and champagne to celebrate the birth.
Each room comes with a private ensuite bathroom (containing Elemis products), satellite TV, a radio, bedside phone, WiFi, a safe and a fridge.
In comparison, Frimley Park does not offer private care for maternity patients and has 14 labour rooms and one birth pool on its general ward. There were 5,360 births between April 2016 and 2017.
Private postnatal rooms are available after birth for a cost of £100, but they do not have ensuite facilities.
Meghan could also opt for the Mulberry Birth Centre at the hospital, which has been designed to be a more homely environment, where the focus is on birth without medical intervention. The unit was refurbished in 2015.
There are four rooms available and each come with a bed, a birthing ball and a bean bag to assist labour.
The Duchess wouldn’t be the first royal to give birth in a NHS-run hospital. Princess Anne’s daughter Zara Tindall had eldest daughter Mia at Gloucestershire Royal Hospital in 2014 and her youngest Lena at Stroud Maternity Unit in June last year.
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