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A shocking report has revealed that more than 80 pregnant women who died during a 3 year period, could have been saved if they had received better care. The report lays bare the importance of correct and appropriate care in maximising patient outcomes and the mounting potential for a birth injury claim to arise in instances where there has been negligent care.
The report was conducted by Oxford University on behalf of the NHS and showed that out of 231 women who died between 2017 and 2019, 37 percent (83 women) could have been saved if the care that they had received had been better. Only 39 women (17 percent) were found to have had good care. The report highlights that inefficiencies in care can have grave consequences and lay way to a surge of maternity compensation claims as a result.
Whilst cardiac disease was found to be the single largest cause of death for mothers during pregnancy, suicide was found to be the largest cause of death in the first year after pregnancy. It is hoped that the findings may lead to improvements in patient care, for example better identification of patients who may be at risk of post-natal depression, and further support provided to those who may need it. Together these steps can help to reduce the number of birth injury to mother claims, where negligent care resulted in an injury or even death of a mother.
The findings of this report come in addition to recent findings that showed huge inequalities in the care provided and birth outcomes across the country. Women from black ethic groups are four times more likely to die in pregnancy than women from white groups. Additionally, pregnant women who live in deprived areas of the country are twice as likely to die compared with women living in affluent areas. It is unknown as to the impact this has on the number of birth injury compensation claims by each demographic group. However, it is hoped that steps can be taken to ensure women are receiving the best care, regardless of race, wealth or social status.
If you or a loved one feel that you suffered poor care during pregnancy, labour or after birth you may be entitled to claim birth compensation. Blackwater Law are specialist medical negligence solicitors, find out if you can claim compensation.