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October 12th 2018

Birth Negligence

LIFE AFTER BABY LOSS – Essential emotional, financial and legal support for parents after stillbirth

Hayley Collinson

Hayley Collinson

Team Supervisor and Solicitor, Clinical Negligence

LIFE AFTER BABY LOSS – Essential emotional, financial and legal support for parents after stillbirth

The pain and suffering which follows the death of a baby is one which will never go away, and in the days and weeks after such a bereavement many parents find themselves feeling overwhelmed, isolated and lost.

The pain and suffering which follows the death of a baby is one which will never go away, and in the days and weeks after such a bereavement many parents find themselves feeling overwhelmed, isolated and lost.

There can be no set time or process to adapt to life after such a devastating loss, but in our experience most parents have a desire to find answers as to whether anything different could have been done which would have saved their baby.

Bereaved parents need support, as life after baby loss is never the same.

Many initially question their own actions, sometimes wrongly blaming themselves. Others simply lock away all of their feelings and focus on other areas of life – nature’s way of dealing with the trauma they have been through.

Couples can find their relationships come under strain, whilst if you are on your own there can be nobody to turn to during one the most painful periods of your life.

It is why our team of birth negligence specialists at Hudgell Solicitors are dedicated to understanding the impact on each and every individual’s life after loss and making a positive difference.

We aim to always provide expert legal advice in a sympathetic and sensitive manner, using our experience to provide you with the support you require to get the answers, help and support you need.

Parents deserve – and in most cases need – full explanations and answers

There are, of course, many cases in which babies are sadly stillborn due to completely unexplained circumstances.

However, at Hudgell Solicitors we passionately believe that thorough investigations, particularly when parents have concerns over the care they received, can help people through the grieving process and to better come to terms with what has happened.

As part of our ‘Life after Baby Loss’ support service, our solicitors will ensure medical records are fully and independently investigated to identify if anything went wrong, and are dedicated to;

  • Helping you through the complaints process to ensure a thorough investigation is launched
  • Gathering evidence of independent medical experts about the treatment you and your baby received
  • Securing compensation for the emotional and psychological impact on you and your family should medical professionals be found to have been at fault
  • Providing you with help and access to any additional therapy, counselling and care you may require.

Solicitor Hayley Collinson said: “We see many parents who have concerns that something went wrong, but have initially felt unable to question their care – and perhaps initially didn’t want to, as they simply wanted to grieve.

“However, it is often the case that in the weeks and months that pass, parents feel uneasy at the explanations provided over want went wrong, and when they begin to ask questions, don’t feel they get the answers they need and deserve.

“We find people then turn to us for help at these most difficult times. Often parents who have a child stillborn can’t begin to move on in any way until they have answers. When answers are found it is not always easy, but it does often help bring closure.

“It can be a difficult moment when we secure independent medical evidence which demonstrates that medical errors were at fault for a baby’s death. At that point a parent faces the reality that their baby should still be with them, and could be so had errors not been made.

“That is a very difficult and upsetting time, but often also the important finding they wanted. Equally we investigate cases to find that, in any circumstance, the baby would not have survived.

“This again is a difficult moment for any parent to face, but can often help bring some form of closure, as parents are able to know that sadly, it was a tragedy in their lives that could not have been avoided.”

“We understand that no amount of money can truly compensate for the loss of a baby, but it can provide crucial financial support that helps people recoup any funds they may be owed, such as lost earnings or support costs, and to help fund therapy for the psychological impact.”

Lessons learned to help prevent future avoidable baby deaths

Through the questioning of NHS Trusts with regards to stillbirths and neonatal deaths, many procedures and protocols are changed, with vital lessons learned which ensure better care for future parents and their children.

“Many parents want answers but they are also just as passionate and dedicated to ensuring lessons are learned,” added Mrs Collinson.

“They don’t want other people to go through the same experience and heartbreak, and they want others to see what happened to them and ask more questions.

“The NHS Duty of Candour commits to transparency and honesty, and we have a duty in our role to ensure they are good to that promise.”

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