The medical team who helped the Duchess of Cambridge give birth to her first two children Prince George and Princess Charlotte not only had to keep the details of her pregnancy a secret, but were also required to abstain from drinking alcohol in the months leading up to the birth while they were on standby.
The team of 20 – which included two obstetricians, three midwives, three anaesthesiologists, four surgical staff members, two special care staffers, four paediatricians, one lab technician (for blood tests) and three or four managers – were handpicked by the royal family to help Kate.
Obstetrician Professor Tiong Ghee Teoh, who was on the team but not at the actual birth, explained the size of the crew to People magazine by saying: ‘Anything that could possibly go wrong, we had a team of people behind each specialty. Everyone was sworn to secrecy.’ The team reportedly met once a month to discuss Kate’s progress.
Anesthesiologist Dr. Johanna Bray also explained the thinking behind the no drinking rule, telling People it was a necessity in case you got the call unexpectedly: ‘We weren’t actually at the birth but were behind the scenes. We were all on call for three months – my husband did the childcare for three months! You never know when you need to be called. You need to be in town and available. If you are at a party you need to have your car keys at the ready. No drinking!’
To all the doctors out there currently sober and awaiting the birth of royal baby number 3: we salute you.