From the blog

UK: Woman Awarded £575K payout Following Botched Childbirth

A mother in UK has been awarded more than half a million pounds for injuries suffered during childbirth.

Amy Stead, 37, from Wrexham, Wales suffered a “rushed” childbirth in 2019 as the obstetrician missed an injury during Stead’s labour.

It took Stead nearly three years to fall pregnant, but the childbirth in 2019 left her with injuries that will last a lifetime as she suffered a tear so severe it left her with a permanent stoma. What is worse, it was not spotted soon enough.

“It turned out that I had a hole between my vagina and rectum, but it had been completely missed,” Ms Stead said.

She said her obstetrician was “in such a rush to leave” that she missed the injury.

She added: “Had she taken more time and care over what she was doing… she may have seen it, and they could have put me to sleep and repaired it properly.”

Ms Stead suffered from PTSD and was in pain for a year after her son was born. “It felt like all the joy had been sucked out of having my first baby,” she said.

She decided to sue her hospital, an incredibly difficult decision as it was where she worked. After a five-year litigation, she has now been awarded £575,000 in damages.

Figures for England for 2022/2023 show maternity services made up 13% of clinical negligence claims, more than any other department.

Last year, the NHS spent £1.1bn on maternity negligence payments. To put this in context, the budget for maternity services in England is £3bn.

Litigation lawyers say damages are often high because of the physical and psychological impact the injuries have.

A spokesperson for the Department for Health and Social Care said: “We’re committed to ensuring all women receive safe and compassionate care from maternity services and we’ve made progress in improving outcomes.