We recently wrote about the tragic case of baby Hallie-Rae Leek, who died as a result of admitted failings on the part of the maternity team at the William Harvey Hospital in Ashford, Kent.
The full article can be found here:
Sadly, the failings in this case were recently highlighted in press coverage of the Inquest in to the death of baby Harry Richford. Our client’s case was mentioned in a BBC news report which mentioned many of the families affected by the failings. The full report can be seen here:
The total number of stillbirths and babies who have died within 28 days of being born at hospitals controlled by East Kent Hospitals University NHS Foundation Trust has been higher than the UK average for every year between 2014 and 2017. In 2017, it was the highest in the country. Sadly, our client was just one of a number of families affected.
In a statement on their website, the Trust says:
“We are reviewing our service with some of England’s leading maternity experts to make sure we are doing everything we can to make rapid improvements to maternity care in east Kent.
We have already made a number of changes to our maternity service. We have:
- Added more consultants and senior clinician oversight of births at our hospitals
- Invested in more maternity and neonatal equipment
- Put a comprehensive training programme in place for all maternity staff on identifying and safely supporting difficult births
- Revised our policy for recruiting and supervising temporary and junior doctors
- Implemented a more comprehensive way of monitoring babies’ health during labour.
We recognise, however, that the scale of change needed in our maternity service has not taken place quickly enough and we need to fully embed further learning and changes to our culture.”
If you have been affected by anything covered in this article, support is available from SANDS (the stillbirth and neonatal death charity) https://www.sands.org.uk/