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A Call for Change: The Urgent Need for a Maternity Commissioner

Posted on 13th May 2024 in Medical Negligence

Posted by

Endurance Arthur

Partner and Solicitor
A Call for Change: The Urgent Need for a Maternity Commissioner

The recent report from the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Birth Trauma, which has been highlighted by BBC News, calls for a significant overhaul of maternity care in the UK.

The inquiry, chaired by MP Theo Clarke, has brought to light harrowing stories of mothers’ experiences in maternity wards, including instances of women being left in their own blood and urine.

The report includes 12 recommendations aimed at improving care for mothers and ensuring a consistent standard of service across the country, thus addressing the ‘postcode lottery’ in care quality.

Theo Clarke, who has shared her own traumatic birth experience, has been a vocal advocate for this cause, leading to the first parliamentary debate on birth trauma last year.

The inquiry’s findings are expected to prompt discussions on how to practically improve maternity services and support for both mothers and fathers during and after childbirth.

Endurance Arthur, Head of Medical Negligence comments: “That 30,000 women a year experience birth trauma is not only unacceptable but is a shocking let down to each of those 30,000 families each year. It is not just the mothers and babies who are harmed, their partners and other family members are also often badly affected.

30,000 is the reported statistic but I know from many of my own baby injury cases that women often suffer in silence after a traumatic birth. Many women focus on getting help for their baby and down play or don’t get help for their own injuries. As such, I suspect that the real numbers of birth traumatised women each year are probably far higher and that is depressing.

The enquiry and report are very welcome but we’ve been here before so something really must change this time around.”

Additionally, the report’s call for mandatory training on trauma-informed care and the recruitment of more midwives, obstetricians, and anaesthetists to ensure safe staffing levels in maternity services could be highlighted.

The inquiry’s findings underscore the need for a national plan to address the disparities in maternity care and to ensure that all women have access to the support they need, regardless of their location. This is a crucial step towards improving the overall quality of maternity care and addressing the long-standing issues that have affected so many families.

How can Tozers help?

We offer expert legal assistance for birth trauma cases, ensuring empathetic and professional guidance for families seeking justice and compensation.

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