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Posted on 23rd October 2017

Midwife Mistakes Leaves Child With Severe Brain Injury

Midwives at a hospital in Southampton did not recognise a condition called neonatal hypoglycaemia in a new born boy leaving him with severe brain damage.

The child was born without complications however when midwives did not recognise his hypoglycaemia, treatment for the condition was not given quickly enough. During the 24 hours after the boy was born, his mum raised concerns with staff regarding his feeding but the low blood sugar levels were not noticed until tests were carried out some time later.

When the test results showed the low blood sugar levels, the hospital took the baby to neonatal intensive care where he stayed for 15 days.

The approval hearing on 23rd October 17 found that the hospital failed to monitor feeding habits and failed to manage his low blood sugar levels. The injured baby now suffers from epilepsy, visual, mobility, learning and behavioural problems.

The NHS Trust has agreed to a settlement of £16.4 million which is for the life-long care and treatment the boy will need. A spokesperson for the Trust commented “We hope the substantial damages awarded in this case will help to ensure the patient receives the care and support he requires throughout his lifetime and enables him to live as independently as possible. A detailed apology was provided to the family some time ago which set out the steps that have been taken since the incident.”


Significant brain injuries caused by the lack of care by medical staff are avoidable but they hit the news headlines because of the level of compensation awarded to the sufferers and their families.

It appears that the awards to patients for compensation claims divides public opinion where some say the payments are justified where as others say that the payments are un-necessarily high.

The cost of supplying 24 hour care for brain damaged children is significant and in addition to the cost of the on-going care, adaptations to the injured person’s house can also be expensive and change as the person gets older.

Certainly at first glance the award of £16.4 million appears to be a large sum of money the NHS has to pay out but it must not be forgotten that in cases where compensation for injuries caused by healthcare professionals are made, the injuries could have been entirely avoided with the appropriate care.

If you or a loved one has been injured because of a lack of poor care or a delay in treatment, you may have grounds to make a compensation claim for clinical negligence. Contact us on 0330 355 9210 or for a free claim assessment.