Stillbirth and Birth Errors – The Ockenden Report

IN RECENT NEWS IT WAS CONFIRMED THAT SEVERAL HUNDRED BABIES DIED OR WERE LEFT BRAIN DAMAGED DUE TO ‘AVOIDABLE ERRORS’ BY A UK NHS TRUST WHERE EXPECTANT MOTHERS WERE DENIED CAESAREAN SECTIONS AND FORCED TO SUFFER TRAUMATIC BIRTHS. THIS WAS THE SUBJECT, IN FEBRUARY 2022, OF A BBC PANORAMA INVESTIGATION INTO THE HARM AND DEATHS OF MOTHER AND BABIES AT A MIDLANDS HOSPITAL.

As a result of the reported deaths, a report was commissioned to be undertaken by Senior midwife, Donna Ockenden. The Ockenden review was first launched in 2017 with the interim report in December 2020 which looked at the first 250 cases. The final report is expected but has been further delayed by “parliamentary processes”.

Stillbirth or the prospect of caring for a severely brain damaged child is a life-changing event and without doubt, is one of the most distressing experiences a parent can ever encounter. The effects of such will have long lasting effects for parents and their families, something which no expectant parent can ever be prepared for.

In a case of brain injury, there will often be a need for lifelong care and assistance and possibly the need for aids and equipment, which can take its toll emotionally and physically.

Such events often have an adverse effect on relationships and sadly will often see families torn apart. Very often there will be a diagnosis of anxiety, depression and post-traumatic stress disorder, which can present for several years after the event, especially if the birth itself was particularly traumatic.

At Youngs, we understand the human cost of medical mistakes and how to maximise financial settlements to ensure that you and your family are in a financial position to afford the best care for your loved ones moving forwards.

If you have suffered such loss as a result of negligent treatment, Swain and Co can assist to claim appropriate damages in an effort to make daily living a little easier.

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