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NHS maternity units closed almost 300 times in 2017

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NHS staffing shortages causing concern

Freedom of Information requests have recently confirmed that almost half of all maternity units in England were forced to turn away expectant mothers in 2017. Maternity units were closed 287 times usually due to lack of capacity and staffing issues. This appears to concur with statistics revealing that there are 3,500 too few midwives.

From a clinical negligence perspective, errors occurring during childbirth are some of the most costly to the NHS and the most severe injuries to babies can lead to the requirement for a lifetime of professional care.

It is disheartening that women are being turned away from hospitals where they had planned to give birth but there are measures in place to ensure that they are redirected to the nearest unit or to midwife-led care. It is also better for both women and their babies that the maternity units which are open to them have the space and staff available to provide the best possible care.

If you or a loved one have suffered a birth injury due to negligent care during labour our clinical negligence specialists may be able to help. Call our team on 01616 966 229