Staff at one of Scotland’s largest hospitals say new fathers are treating postnatal wards “like a hotel” by ordering takeaways and staying overnight with their partners after they have given birth.

The Edinburgh Evening News reported midwifery staff at the Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh (RIE) have been left ‘demoralised and undermined’ by management after expressing concerns regarding overcrowding on the wards following an ‘influx of men’ staying with new mothers, despite being encouraged to go home.

They also claimed some partners regularly ordered takeaway food and used staff kitchens at the hospital, adding it was causing ‘stress’ among staff and new mothers.

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Staff say they are now concerned about their ability to maintain safety standards on the ward.

One midwife told the newspaper: “There are women on the ward who are uncomfortable and too embarrassed to get changed or breastfeed because of the amount of visitors there staying over and their sleep is being disrupted.”

“Childbirth and postnatal period should be about women and babies and we’re having to bend over backwards for men treating it like a hotel.”

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Partners are usually encouraged to go home after a child has been born and return within visiting hours.

Several midwives have raised concerns with management after observing some men overstaying their welcome, only to be told to ‘accept’ that no robust policy was in place.

Some are understood to have escalated their complaints to NHS Lothian’s Chief Executive, however have received no response.