Dozens More Mothers And Babies May Have Died At Shrewsbury and Telford Hospitals Trust

The trust is already under investigation.
Press Association

A baby who died after midwives ignored signs of a serious infection is just one of more than 60 cases of poor care spanning 19 years reportedly found at a maternity unit under investigation for failing families.

Multiple mothers and babies are feared to have died or suffered serious injuries occurred at Shrewsbury and Telford Hospitals Trust, according to the Health Service Journal (HSJ).

Senior midwife Donna Ockenden was appointed last year to review 23 cases of alleged poor maternity care at the NHS trust, the Press Association reported.

More families have reportedly come forward with concerns about the service spanning a period of 19 years.

The latest deaths are feared to have happened in December 2017, when a mother and two babies died in unrelated incidents.

Rhiannon Davies, whose daughter Kate died nine years ago, told the HSJ: “Unlike what I was led to believe in 2009 Kate was not the first avoidable death at the trust.

“Yet no one bothered to learn and so sealed her fate – and mine, and that causes me almost unbearable pain.”

She added: “There are lots more cases now and all that learning could be lost because things will be missed.”

Kayleigh Griffiths, whose daughter Pippa died in 2016 after midwives ignored signs of a serious infection, said the trust is “not open to change”.

“There are going to be more cases as families are coming forward,” she told the HSJ.

An internal review has also been launched into maternity care at the trust.

Jo Banks, director of the women and children’s care group at the trust, said the multiple reviews gave the trust the “best opportunity to look at all the care we provide to learn and improve”.

“We are committed to the continuous improvement of safety in our maternity services and were recently praised by NHS Resolution for meeting all 10 targets in its maternity incentive scheme,” she told the HSJ.

Dr Kathy McLean, executive medical director and chief operating officer at NHS Improvement, said: “Our independent review will consider everything it can to ensure Shrewsbury and Telford Hospital NHS Trust is equipped to learn from the previous failings in its maternity and neonatal services.

“This includes continuing to examine the 23 historical investigations identified in April 2017, as well as investigations that have been highlighted since then.

“Working with CQC and others, we will ensure the trust has the right support in place to continue to improve its services for patients.”

A Department of Health and Social Care spokesman said: “We take any patient safety concerns extremely seriously – we have asked NHS Improvement to investigate whether further cases at Shrewsbury and Telford should be considered as part of the Ockenden Review, as well as assurance that the Trust has taken steps to improve maternity services since these issues came to light in 2016.”


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