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Parents contact lawyers over 27 Shropshire baby deaths

Lanyon Bowdler said a number of parents have contacted the firm asking to be included in a review. The cases relate to three areas, the death of a baby either stillborn or a neonatal death, brain injury suffered at birth or the death of a mother. Beth Harrison, a clinical negligence solicitor at Lanyon Bowdler, said the organisation is currently looking into 27 cases relating to Shrewsbury and Telford Hospital NHS Trust.

Despite the firm deciding to investigate the cases it does not mean that the incidents have been a result of negligence. Ms Harrison said: “These could be very early stages, they might not all prove to be negligence but as a firm we have deemed them worthy of investigation.” She said that a number of the parents they have spoken with have asked for their child’s case to be included in a review ordered by the Health Secretary, Jeremy Hunt, last month.

The review is looking at the quality of investigations carried out into the avoidable deaths of nine babies at the trust. Ms Harrison said: “A lot of people are contacting us to ask if they can be part of the inquiry.”

Advertising The solicitor echoed a call from Shropshire parent Rhiannon Davies, whose letter to Mr Hunt sparked the review, for a full inquiry to be carried out so that all potential cases are examined.

Ms Harrison said: “In my opinion it needs to be an inquiry into the whole service. It needs to look at it as a whole rather than isolated cases.” Ms Harrison said a number of parents had contacted them in the wake of the publicity surrounding maternity services at SATH.

Yesterday the Department of Health said that any decision over including other concerned parents’ cases in the review would have to be taken by the Health Secretary and the new government after the General Election on June 8[1]. Speaking last month after Jeremy Hunt ordered a review of the way the cases were investigated, Ms Davies said: “We are not going away. We are not the only ones and now we have other families behind us, there is momentum behind us.

There has to be a public inquiry.”

References

  1. ^ any decision over including other concerned parents’ cases in the review would have to be taken by the Health Secretary and the new government after the General Election on June 8 (www.shropshirestar.com)

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