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Hospital apologises for midwife failures that caused child’s brain damage
17 September 2013
A hospital trust has apologised to the parents of a boy who suffered devastating brain damage after failures in care by maternity staff.
Bradley Albans, now eight, from Retford, Nottinghamshire, suffered devastating hypoglycaemic brain damage two days after his birth in May 2005, while he was under the care of midwives at
Bassetlaw District General Hospital. The midwives failed to take any action when there were clear signs that he was dangerously unwell.
As a result he developed hypoglycaemic brain damage, which is caused by low blood sugars but can be prevented if simple steps are taken when the first symptoms develop. Bradley has learning difficulties and epilepsy, as well as some physical disabilities, and has life-long care needs. He will never be able to live independently or hold down a job and will be dependent on others for the rest of his life.
After his parents Rachel and Wayne challenged the poor care Bradley received as a newborn with the help of medical law experts at JMW Solicitors, the hospital trust admitted negligence.
The trust has since written to the couple to apologise for the poor care that caused Bradley’s devastating brain damage.
Eddie Jones, a specialist brain injury lawyer at JMW Solicitors, is representing Bradley in his fight for justice. He commented: “Bradley’s parents have had to come to terms with Bradley’s significant injuries and the fact that they were completely avoidable if basic failures in care had not been made.
“Despite this they have shown great courage throughout this case and I am delighted that we have reached such an important milestone.
“Bradley was seen by midwives both at home and in hospital following his birth and despite him being jittery, excessively sleepy and not feeding, they failed to take any action or give Rachel any advice. Rachel raised concerns about these symptoms on several occasions but was reassured that they were nothing to worry about. In reality they were clear warning signs of low blood sugars that required prompt investigation and treatment.
“There appeared to be a lack of awareness of the signs of hypoglycaemia and the risk this can pose to the child. That is a totally unacceptable failure in basic care by the trust and it is important that this is recognised so that lessons can be learned to minimise the risk of a tragic reoccurrence.”
Bradley’s mother Rachel, 31, commented: “Finding out Bradley’s brain damage was due to poor care was extremely distressing and we have faced some difficult times. However we are relieved that the trust has made this apology and has recognised the mistakes that were made.
“Our main priority has, and always will be, to ensure we can meet Bradley’s needs and that he has access to help and support he needs. However we are very keen that lessons are learned to ensure that other babies in the same situation get the care that they urgently need.
"We feel relieved that the hospital has apologised and we sincerely hope that training will be introduced where needed to ensure midwives are alert to the warning signs that a baby is in danger.”
For more information or to arrange an interview, please contact Kelly Livesey on the details below:
D. 0161 828 1868
Note to Editors
JMW Solicitors LLP is a leading Manchester law firm and offers a broad range of legal services to both commercial and private clients.JMW’s Clinical Negligence team is headed up by leading clinical negligence lawyer, Eddie Jones.