The mother, aged 33, had delivered her first child, a healthy baby boy, late in the evening. Shortly afterwards, there were complications during the third stage of labour. Medical staff unsuccessfully attempted several times to remove her placenta and eventually used so much force, her entire uterus was pulled out of her body. She then suffered postpartum haemorrhage and was rushed to surgery, where she suffered a cardiac arrest and died.
Not informed of the catastrophic condition she was now in, her family – husband, sister, mother and father - were taken unprepared into the ICU to witness the immediate aftermath of attempts to resuscitate her. The combination of witnessing the traumatic birth and the immediate aftermath resulted in severe psychiatric injury to them all.
Given the appalling nature of the hospital's negligence, the General Medical Council, National Midwifery Council and Crown Prosecution Service are investigating disciplinary and criminal charges against the Defendant Trust and the individual staff involved. An inquest is scheduled for next spring.
Despite the ongoing regulatory and criminal proceedings, Mark was able to bring both parties to a mediation to explore settlement at a very early stage. Following a long day of negotiation on four separate and difficult secondary victim cases, settlement was agreed for a combined sum of £200,000. The additional claim brought on behalf of the deceased's husband and young son also settled for a substantial sum.
Although no sum of money will ever be enough, early closure of the litigation was felt to be in family's best interests in helping them begin to come to terms with their loss.
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