HIE brain injuries caused by lack of oxygen to the baby’s brain around the time of birth are the most common cause of claims from negligent maternity and neonatal care. These injuries are devastating, often causing the child a lifetime of physical and/or intellectual disability and leaving them forever dependent on others for all their daily needs.
HIE – what parents of brain injured babies should know
Most of the parents who come to us after their child’s birth injury know little about HIE but are beginning to realise that mistakes or problems at birth may have injured their child’s brain. They may have been contacted by the hospital trust where their baby was born or invited to meet with representatives from NHS Resolution, HSIB or MNSI. This is because all stillbirths, neonatal (newborn) deaths or brain injuries to babies from HIE must be reported by the NHS trust which provided the maternity care for further investigation.
The annual numbers of HIE birth injuries in England were highlighted as a cause for concern by the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists’ (RCOG) Each Baby Counts programme, which tried to reduce harm by helping the NHS learn from mistakes in maternity care. The government and the NHS’s defence organisation, NHS Resolution, are trying hard to cut the cost of compensation which is paid out to the hundreds of children who suffer severe HIE brain injuries from negligent maternity care each year. This has led to parents being interviewed and data gathered from them by HSIB and NHS Resolution, which could form evidence in a future claim, without them being advised to seek independent legal advice. ‘Early intervention’ was supposed to lead to earlier financial help for the injured babies’ families, but the published figures suggest that interim payments made to families (who have not sought advice from their own solicitors) have been rare.
At Boyes Turner, we understand the impact that HIE birth injuries have on the child and their family, now and into the future. Our cerebral palsy specialists have helped countless families affected by HIE birth injuries to claim their child’s entitlement to compensation to help pay for care, adapted accommodation, therapies, specialist aids and equipment, special education and lifelong needs. We remain committed to securing practical and financial help for severely injured children and their families after devastating injuries have been caused by negligent maternity care.
If you have been contacted by the NHS trust where your baby was born, HSIB, MNSI or NHS Resolution following the birth of your baby, you should contact us here for free, independent, specialist legal advice straight away. If negligent care during pregnancy, labour, delivery or immediately after birth have caused your child to suffer an HIE brain injury, your child may be entitled to an immediate interim payment and substantial compensation.
If your child is entitled to compensation and you decide to make a claim, we can offer a range of funding options, including Legal Aid and no-win-no-fee, depending on what’s best for the child.