Our client Christine* was awarded £11,500 after a tennis ball sized amount of placental material failed to be delivered during her labour at Sunderland Hospital.
Christine was looking forward to spending those first, precious moments with her newborn baby; substandard treatment at Sunderland Hospital, however, meant that Christine continued to bleed excessively in the immediate postnatal period. She then required readmission and had to undergo further surgery, placing incredible strain on her family too.
Afterwards, Christine found it difficult to adapt to life as a new mother, suffering from anxiety attacks and psychological symptoms, including reduced reactivity of mood, reduced ability to enjoy pleasure, and insomnia.
Christine contacted us seeking assistance, requesting that we investigate a potential claim for damages as a result of Clinical Negligence. She alleged that the City Hospitals Sunderland NHS Foundation Trust had sent her home after she had given birth despite her having retained placental material the size of a tennis ball.
Christine reported that she had bled heavily for weeks after having given birth and, despite midwives seeing her every day, was not re-admitted until she had become ill and her GP had told her to return to hospital.
Christine had required a blood transfusion and surgery to evacuate the remains of the placenta. As a consequence of her experience, Christine told us that she had suffered with severe psychological symptoms.
After our meeting, we arranged for Christine to meet an Independent Consultant Clinical Psychiatrist, who diagnosed her with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and was informed that she would require a course of Cognitive Behavioural Therapy.
John Lowther, one of our Clinical Negligence solicitors, was instructed to investigate the claim under the terms of a “No-Win No-Fee Agreement”.
Medical records were obtained and a witness statement was prepared. We contacted the Defendant Trust and requested that it make admissions based on evidence that we highlighted from the medical records.
The Defendant Trust involved the NHS Litigation Authority and arranged for a firm of Solicitors called DAC Beachcroft to investigate. Soon afterwards, the Defendant Trust admitted that it had provided substandard care, as had been alleged in our letter.
At that stage, no settlement proposals were made by the Defendant. It invited us to obtain evidence as to the extent and nature of any injuries suffered.
On behalf of Christine, we obtained evidence from a medical expert in Obstetrics and Gynaecology and from a Consultant Psychiatrist.
Christine’s financial losses were investigated and set out in a document forwarded to the Defendant. Details of the advice obtained from the Obstetrician and Gynaecologist and Psychiatrist were forwarded to the Defendant.
The Defendant proposed settlement for £10,000 damages. Following further negotiations, the Defendant agreed to increase this to £11,500 and that sum was accepted on Christine’s instructions.
If you would like to discuss a potential claim relating to substandard care during a pregnancy or after a birth, do not hesitate to contact us for a no obligation, free consultation about securing compensation and getting rehabilitation support as quickly as possible.
Any claim for compensation will need to take into account pain, suffering and loss of amenity together with any past and future financial loss and expense including earnings, rehabilitation and treatment costs, and nursing care.
*Client’s names have been changed to protect their identity