For expectant parents, a stillbirth can be one of the most heartbreaking and horrific events to experience. It is physically and emotionally distressing, but knowing that the medical professional could have done more to save your child makes the entire experience even more tragic. While a stillbirth medical negligence compensation will not restore the life of your baby, it can compensate for the negligence you have suffered.
Stillbirth medical negligence claims can be a complex and harrowing process, but it can bring peace of mind to parents who have lost their baby due to negligence. It can also compensate for the pain and suffering they experienced, as well as any expenses they have incurred due to the stillbirth. For instance, many parents may have their work hours reduced or miss work totally as they come to terms with what has happened, and stillbirth claims for compensation will cover for the loss of income. It can also cover costs of counselling and other expenses you have had to undertake.
At Medical Negligence Direct, we work with an experienced panel of specialist solicitors who help parents secure the compensation they deserve for substandard care, including stillbirth negligence. With a strong track record of success, we pride ourselves on prioritizing the interests of our customers, and work with the highest level of confidentiality. This article discusses how you can make a stillbirth claim and how much compensation you may be entitled to.
What is a Stillbirth?
A stillbirth is the death of a baby after the 24th week of pregnancy. Sadly, this happens more often than many people realize, with about five in 1,000 babies stillborn in the UK every year. While some stillbirths are a result of issues with the mother’s health, a few others are due to negligent treatment.
Stillbirth Due to Negligence
All medical professionals, be it under the NHS or private institutions, must uphold a high standard of care when treating their patients. Nevertheless, they could make mistakes, and there are a number of ways a medical professional or hospital could be deemed negligent and responsible for the stillbirth of your baby.
If any of the following conditions have been misdiagnosed or mistreated, you may have grounds on which to make a stillbirth negligence claim:
- Pre-eclampsia: This is a complication characterized by high blood pressure to the mother. If left untreated, the mother and baby could be at risk.
- Infection: On average, 1 in 10 stillbirths are caused by an infection, mostly bacterial, which affects the infant who is yet to develop an immune system. Other infections which can cause stillbirths include chlamydia, Lyme disease and Toxoplasmosis.
- Umbilical cord issues: The umbilical cord may become knotted, preventing the baby from receiving nutrients from the mother. It may also wrap itself around the baby, making life in the womb difficult.
- Placenta issues: The placenta plays a key role in the life of a baby, as it carries nutrients from mother to baby. If the placenta stops functioning, the baby will be unable to receive nutrients and blood from the mother, and could hinder their development. This means that the baby may not live for long after birth, and even the mother could suffer serious health problems.
- Mother’s health: Conditions such as obesity, pre-existing diabetes and even age can increase the chance of a stillbirth.
If your baby has suffered any of these conditions and it was misdiagnosed, untreated or incorrectly treated and your baby has died as a result, you may be entitled to stillbirth claims for compensation. If diagnosed early, most of these conditions can be treated and prevent the death of your baby. Stillbirths as a result of medical negligence should never happen, but if it does, you may be able to make a claim for compensation.
Making a Stillbirth Compensation Claim
A stillbirth compensation claim can help you find out what led to the death of your baby and why it happened. The specialist solicitors we work with can also help you get an apology from the responsible party, as well as assurances that no patient will suffer similar negligent treatment in future.
Parents who have lost their baby due to stillbirth can suffer serious psychological trauma. This can be worsened if they discover that something could have been done to prevent the death. We understand how difficult it can be to move on from such a traumatic event, which is why we strive to make the claims process as hassle-free as possible for you.
Solicitors at Medical Negligence Direct have helped many parents to successfully challenge the negligent treatment that led to the death of their infant. We advise victims of stillbirth negligence to speak to us at their earliest convenience so we can provide the support they need as soon as possible.
NHS Complaints for Stillbirth Claims
If your baby was stillborn and you are considering whether you should make a complaint or file for a claim, you should really do both. You can still make a compensation claim alongside lodging a complaint directly to the NHS for the negligent treatment you have suffered. In fact, using the NHS complaints procedure to make a complaint can support the damages for stillbirth you can claim.
If you are making a complaint against the NHS, you need to do so within 12 months of the medical negligence, and you can complain directly to your healthcare provider or the organization funded by the NHS. The NHS will respond to your complaint, outlining how they intend to investigate the case and give you a timescale within which a full response to your complaint will be made. Once the investigation is complete, you can use the result to support your compensation claim.
Average Amount for StillBirth Compensation Claims
Compensation amounts for stillbirth due to negligence can vary greatly and are awarded on an individual basis. We cannot give you an exact amount for your stillbirth medical negligence claim but the table below can give you an idea of what to expect.
|Reason for claim||Average Compensation Amount/strong>||Description|
|Pain and suffering||£1,000 – £200,000||Difficult to prove and place a monetary value, but the level of pain and suffering will determine compensation amount.|
|Loss of earnings||£5,000 – £500,000||To compensate for lost income while you recover|
|Less serious psychological damage||£1,000 – £4,500||The level of sleep deprivation and impact on your daily routine will determine amount.|
|Severe psychological damage||£40,000 – £90,000||Prolonged suffering / Impact on your relationships and ability to concentrate on work.|
No Win No Fee Stillbirth Compensation Claims
After the loss of your baby, the last thing you want to worry about when making a compensation claim is sourcing a large source to get the claim started. At Medical Negligence Direct, we will offer you a free, no obligation consultation to discuss details of your case, and if we believe you may be entitled to a stillbirth negligence claim, we will provide legal representation for you on a no win no fee basis.
A No Win No Fee agreement means anyone can gain access to justice and seek compensation for negligence, no matter their financial capacity. Even if your stillbirth claim is unsuccessful, you will not need to pay us any fee. We will only take a success fee if your claim is unsuccessful.
We understand that this is a difficult time for you, and will do everything to ensure the process is as easy as possible.
Why Work with Us?
The panel of specialist Medical Negligence Solicitors we work with understand that going through the complex claims process is the least of your priorities after what has happened. This is why we handle your claim with utmost care and compassion. When you get in touch with us, our solicitors will get all the details they need so they can represent you and help you secure the compensation you deserve.
Call us today on 0800 644 4240 to speak with one of our friendly solicitors or you can fill out our claims assessment form and we will get in touch with you as soon as possible.