The cost of medical negligence compensation has increased to £1.6 billion over a 10-year period up to 2017, according to the National Audit Office.
Failings in delivering adequate medical care to mothers and babies continues to be a significant issue following the death of several new mothers across the UK in 2018, due to birth complications.
The government has pledged a greater focus on improving maternity care in hospitals across the country with figures revealing that half the compensation paid as a result of medical errors were for maternity and neonatal claims.
The Department of Health has pledged to “…halve the rates of neonatal deaths, stillbirths, maternal deaths and brain injuries caused during or shortly after labour by 2025”.
Blackpool based birth injuries solicitor Diane Rostron commented: “There have been several announcements this year relating to how the government plans to improve maternity care and it is essential that mothers feel safe going into their local hospital to deliver their baby.
“Often in these cases, lifelong catastrophic injuries are inflicted following delays in medical staff taking appropriate action or failing to adequately monitor how the baby is doing during labour.
“We have represented many families where an emergency c-section was required for example, but medical staff failed to do this losing vital minutes, and in some cases, hours during which the baby’s condition has deteriorated before medical intervention has proceeded.
“These cases are thankfully rare however, when they do occur, it changes the lives of entire families. The number of birth injuries can at least be significantly reduced if maternity units had adequate staffing levels – both in terms of the number of specialists on hand and seniority.
“All too often we talk to families whose baby has suffered catastrophic brain injuries due to their medical care being provided by junior level staff.”
Compensation for birth related injuries are extensive. Delays of just minutes or the failure of medical professionals to properly monitor a baby’s health during childbirth can result in injuries that affect every aspect of their development from that point onwards.
These avoidable failings in medical care can mean the difference between a perfectly healthy baby being delivered to a baby facing lifelong care needs, the inability to ever work and sometimes even the inability to form relationships.
For more information about Diane Rostron, Blackpool based birth injuries medical negligence solicitor, visit dianerostron.co.uk or for a confidential chat call 01253 766 559.