Boyes Turner’s birth injury specialists have secured a compensation settlement for a mother who suffered traumatic birth injuries during the birth of her baby by ventouse delivery. Our client had set out clearly in her birth plan during her pregnancy that she did not want forceps used during the birth and stated a preference for caesarean section. Her indication that she did not consent to a forceps delivery was not followed up by the maternity team. Nobody discussed her concerns with her or counselled her to clarify her consent in relation to instrumental delivery (using forceps or ventouse suction to help deliver the baby). When the time came for her baby to be born, the registrar performed a ventouse delivery after delayed progress was noted in labour. She suffered traumatic injuries, including a third degree vaginal tear and prolapses of the bladder and urethra, which left her with impaired bladder, bowel and sexual sensation. She also suffered a psychological injury. We investigated the maternity treatment that our client had received and put her claim to the hospital on the basis that the maternity team negligently failed to act on her decision to exclude consent for a forceps delivery by referring her to an obstetrician for counselling to understand her concerns about instrumental delivery (including ventouse) and obtain her informed consent. The defendant hospital trust admitted that the maternity team were negligent in failing to refer her to an obstetrician by 36 weeks of pregnancy. Medical experts on both sides agreed that if an obstetric review had taken place at 36 weeks, our client would have been advised and encouraged to consent to a vaginal delivery and to the use of forceps or ventouse. The trust argued that in these circumstances, after discussion with the obstetrician at 36 weeks, our client would have taken their advice and consented to an instrumental delivery. Our client’s evidence was that she would not have agreed to a forceps or ventouse delivery, and would have opted for a caesarean section. We issued court proceedings and were preparing to pursue the case, but then received a low settlement offer from the trust. We disclosed more detailed evidence in support of our client’s claim and entered into settlement negotiations, which resulted in an agreed out-of-court settlement. If you or a family member have suffered severe injury as a result of medical negligence or have been contacted by HSSIB/MNSI or NHS Resolution you can talk to a solicitor, free and confidentially, for advice about how to respond or make a claim by contacting us.