Grieving Mother Calls For Public Inquiry Into Nhs Maternity Trust Following Baby Death

Grieving Mother Calls For Public Inquiry Into Nhs Maternity Trust Following Baby Death

By Charlotte Webster-

Chloe Vowels Lovett, (pictured with partner)a mother who tragically lost her baby daughter Esme after multiple missed medical opportunities, is calling for a public inquiry into the University Hospitals Sussex NHS Foundation Trust’s maternity services.

Ms. Vowels Lovett(pictured) has urged hospital authorities to “listen to mothers” following her own harrowing experience, which culminated in Esme being stillborn at 38 weeks on February 18, 2022.

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Only last year, Nottingham hospital was subjected to a similar review in the wake of similar medical failings. with hundreds of baby deaths and injuries being examined.

It has now been reported that between 2006 and 2023, £101 million was paid in claims against NUH. This related to 134 cases regarding failings in maternity services at NUH.

Despite experiencing severe pain and other complications from 33 weeks into her pregnancy, including a high-risk diagnosis of placenta abruption and polyhydramnios, Ms. Vowels Lovett’s concerns were repeatedly dismissed by hospital staff.

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A post-mortem examination and internal investigation revealed that medical professionals at Worthing Hospital missed at least six opportunities to intervene and potentially save Esme’s life.

Ms. Vowels Lovett and her husband, Toby Lovett, who endured seven years of trying to conceive and six miscarriages before expecting Esme, have been vocal about their ordeal.

They join other bereaved families in demanding an independent review of the Trust’s maternity services. “To lose a child when you shouldn’t have lost a child is just unbearable,” Ms. Vowels Lovett said, emphasizing the broader issue of mothers not being listened to by healthcare providers.

The couple’s call for a review comes in the wake of an all-parliamentary inquiry into birth trauma, which highlighted that many women feel “treated as an inconvenience” during childbirth.

Ms. Vowels Lovett recalled her own painful experience of being ignored by medical staff, even when she reported significant pain and bleeding.

The Trust has since apologized to the Lovett family. Dr. Tim Taylor, the chief of women and children’s division, stated, “We have met with Esme’s family to express our deepest condolences and sincere apologies for their devastating loss, and I would like to repeat that apology publicly today.”

He added that the Trust conducted a comprehensive investigation, leading to significant service improvements, including urgent appointments for parents with complex medical issues and a centralized telephone triage service.

Despite these measures, Ms. Vowels Lovett remains critical of the Trust’s actions, citing a recurring pattern of unfulfilled promises for change.

She noted that several families have now come together, all having experienced similar tragedies under the same Trust. “It just pushes forward the fact that something more needs to be done,” she asserted, advocating for a review to ensure accountability and prevent further losses.

The call for a public inquiry has garnered additional support from other affected families, including Robyn and Jonny Davis, whose baby Orlando died due to neglect at Worthing Hospital.

Clinical negligence solicitor Laura Cook, representing the Lovett and Davis families, likened their campaign to the ongoing independent review of maternity services at Nottingham University Hospitals.

Cook emphasized the importance of collective action, stating, “I think this is how it starts; it’s a few families that get together and they push it through… there’s a high chance we’re gathering momentum that we’ll be able to push for something like that to happen.”

As more families come forward, sharing their experiences and seeking justice, the pressure mounts on the Trust to address systemic issues in its maternity services comprehensively. The Lovetts’ campaign aims not only to seek justice for Esme but to ensure that no other families endure the same devastating loss.

Ms. Vowels Lovett’s poignant message to hospital bosses is a stark reminder of the need for change: “Don’t put other families through this and listen to mothers, if they feel strongly that something’s wrong or they keep coming in, there must be a reason.”


Image: PA

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