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Posted 21 June 2017
What can be done at the childbirth stage to reduce baby deaths and brain injuries?
Stuart Bramley, a solicitor specialising in birth-related litigation, writes –
“Tragic though they are, the findings of the recent ‘Each Baby Counts’ enquiry by the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists come as no surprise to lawyers fighting on behalf of families of babies who have been harmed or died during delivery or the neonatal period. The intention of the Health Service’s internal risk management procedures is that if a legal claim flags up poor practice or areas where safer procedures could be instituted, those concerns will be fed back and acted upon. If this does happen at all it is clearly not happening properly as we see the same errors recurring in maternity units across the UK, and sometimes within the same hospital where an identical situation has occurred in the past. The hard work by obstetricians and midwives, working in a highly challenging environment, is being undermined by a failure to learn from past mistakes, even following the ‘duty of candour’ which was recently introduced. It is concerning to read that in a quarter of cases the local investigations were insufficiently thorough to properly consider what went awry.
It is very much hoped that the ‘Each Baby Counts’ enquiry will lead to improvements being made so that stories such as Alfie Field’s will cease to exist in the 21st-century NHS.”
Here at Tozers, we have an experienced team of Medical Negligence solicitors. Please contact us if you have any queries or questions.