British Royal Family

How does a princess give birth? With the help of a staff of more than 20 who were on call for months beforehand, of course, according to doctors behind the scenes. The royal family invited a few members of the medical team behind the deliveries of Prince George and Princess Charlotte to a garden party on Tuesday to thank them for their work. Two of them chatted with reporters about what the process was like. People reports that the births involved a gigantic team that had to keep a secret—and stop drinking—for months before each birth.

Professor Tiong Ghee Teoh, a consultant obstetrician who was on the birth team but not at the actual labor, said she was part of a massive crew of about 20 that was dedicated to Kate and the future royals. “Anything that could possibly go wrong, we had a team of people behind each specialty,” Teoh said. “Everyone was sworn to secrecy.” They met about once a month to talk about Kate’s progress and prepare for any situation. Kate gave birth at St. Mary’s Hospital in London, which is where Princess Diana gave birth to Prince William and Prince Harry.

Kate’s team was giant: two obstetricians, three midwives, three anesthesiologists, four surgical staff members, two special care staffers, four pediatricians, one lab technician for blood tests, and three or four managers. A typical mom in the hospital has this number of people around, but they’d be treated by whoever was in the hospital that day, not by a hand-picked, dedicated team, The Telegraph notes.

Will and Kate’s team had to be on call for three months before the birth, and that meant living like monks the entire time. “You never know when you need to be called,” Dr. Johanna Bray, an anesthesiologist who was on call, told People. “If you are at a party you need to have your car keys at the ready. No drinking!”

Apparently, Kate wasn’t prepared for how gigantic the team would be, either. “We had a chat, the Duchess was very appreciative,” Teoh said, “and she said there were a lot more people behind the scenes than you would realise.” And those people also included her hairstylist, Amanda Cook Turner, and stylist Natasha Archer, who were also thanked at the garden party. Now those are two team members that most new moms don’t have.

From: Harper’s BAZAAR US