Catalogue of failures by maternity staff cause baby’s brain damage - £26 million

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Catalogue of failures by maternity staff cause baby’s brain damage - £26 million

‘Khalil’, eight

Khalil was born after a traumatic delivery involving numerous mistakes by maternity staff which caused his brain to be starved of oxygen. He suffered catastrophic brain damage which has led to severe learning disabilities and behavioural problems. Khalil will require 24-hour care for the rest of his life and will never be able to work for a living or have his own family. His case was taken on by Eddie Jones, head of clinical negligence at JMW Solicitors, who obtained £26 million in compensation to cover the cost of the specialist care needed to keep him and his family safe.

High-risk delivery not recognised  

Khalil’s mother Anita went into labour unexpectedly at 34 weeks pregnant and was taken to hospital by ambulance. However staff at the hospital failed to recognise that the prematurity of the labour, the fact Khalil was in the breech position and Anita had an emergency C-section with a previous baby, meant that it should be treated as high-risk. The delivery was therefore managed by a midwife when it should have been closely monitored by doctors.

The midwife was not competent enough to manage the delivery on her own. When she examined Anita and found her to be fully dilated she did not know what she should do and whether she could artificially break Anita’s waters which were still intact. The midwife left the room several times to seek advice however there is no record that she spoke to a doctor.  

About half an hour later the heart rate monitor that had been set up to trace Khalil’s heart rate showed worrying findings. However the midwife failed to immediately alert a senior doctor as she ought to have done and was hospital policy. Furthermore she performed a vaginal examination which revealed Khalil was in the breech position and as Anita was fully dilated this also meant she required urgent review by an obstetrician.

Severe distress

When Anita was finally reviewed by two doctors they failed to check the heart rate monitor and also to realise that this hadn’t been recording Khalil’s heart rate for some time. They agreed that Khalil should be delivered by caesarean but did not organise this as an emergency due to their failure to appreciate he was in severe distress.

Khalil was eventually delivered by caesarean more than two hours after the first signs that he was in distress were visible. However, his brain had been starved of oxygen and permanently damaged. As a result he will have severe disabilities for the rest of his life and has been robbed of the chance of ever being able to live independently, work for a living or have his own family.

Cerebral palsy compensation awarded

Khalil’s family were put in touch with the specialist cerebral palsy solicitors at JMW. Our investigation uncovered the numerous failings that had occurred and caused Khalil’s delivery to be delayed. The hospital trust later admitted negligence and apologised and Eddie Jones, head of our team, was successful in securing £26 million in compensation to cover the lifetime of specialist care and financial security that Khalil requires.

Get in touch

If you have concerns that a child’s cerebral palsy was caused due to a poor standard of care call our experienced and sensitive team on 0345 872 6666 or allow us to call you back at a more convenient time by completing our online enquiry form at the side of this page. We are friendly and approachable solicitors, and a free, no-obligation conversation can help you better understand your position and the next steps you should take.

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