FREE HEALTH: South-west health directer doctor Chris Buck.
FREE HEALTH: South-west health directer doctor Chris Buck.

Doctor's pregnancy comments cause outrage

A ROMA-BASED doctor has come under fire for a post he made on social media last week.

Executive director of medical services Dr Chris Buck's status about the timing of epidurals was intended to be humorous but no-one saw the funny side of it.

The post read; "Dear pregnant women. Please respect your friendly duty anaesthetist and consider getting your epidural inserted prior to 11.30pm when he may have already been in bed for an hour getting beauty sleep. Also, please be patient because unlike you, we were snuggled in our warm comfy beds and can't feel a thing so don't want to rush when called at this hour. I've said it before, if in doubt cut it out. That could have saved us all some pain and been done at a reasonable hour. Sincerely, me."

South West Hospital and Health Service chief executive Glynis Schultz spoke on behalf of Dr Buck and said she was disappointed by his actions.

"Like everyone, I am saddened by the insensitive comments directed at pregnant women by Dr Chris Buck on a recent Facebook post," she said.

"Dr Buck made these comments on his personal Facebook page.

"Nevertheless, his comments were unacceptable and I have made this very clear to Dr Buck, who removed the post and apologised for his error of judgement."

Roma mum of two and member of Maternity Consumer Network Tracey Biehn said she was appalled after reading the post.

A new Roma Hospital could be on the cards with the current hospital needing significant repairs.



Photo Graham Osborne / Western Star
A new Roma Hospital could be on the cards with the current hospital needing significant repairs. Photo Graham Osborne / Western Star Graham Osborne

"I felt sick and really disturbed," she said.

"I didn't see the humour in it at all and it's super alarming that someone in his position would think it's okay to say something like that."

Ms Biehn said women should never feel pressured to make any decisions about their pregnancy.

"Women need to weigh out what's best for them and make their decisions by educating themselves on what's out there," Ms Biehn said.

"It's a pretty big statement to tell some to get a c-section as they are a big deal.

"No doctor in their right mind would say it's a safer or better option to have a c-section."

Ms Schultz said Dr Buck's comments in no way reflected the views of South-West Health.

"I can assure members of the South-West community and users of our maternity services those comments are not representative of our health service," she said.

"All our staff work hard and with total commitment and dedication towards providing the best possible care for all our patients during every single day and night of the year.

"I would like to apologise unreservedly to the women of the South-West, to all our communities and to our health service staff for any upset caused by these comments."

Dr Buck made an apology on his Facebook page saying; "I'd like to acknowledge and apologise for my previous comments. They were intended in humour and certainly were not intended to hurt anyone, however I now realise they were insensitive. I certainly realise the error of my judgment and that I upset many people. I certainly unreservedly apologise for this."


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