Culture of blame holding back maternity safety

Mother holding her baby's hand

The safety of maternity services in England has not improved quickly enough, a committee of MPs says. A “culture of blame” was preventing staff admitting mistakes and lessons being learned, its report said.

Jeremy Hunt, who chairs the Health and Social Care Committee, said 1,000 more babies a year would survive if England’s maternity services were as safe as Sweden’s. Some £2m is being spent on spotting early signs of babies in distress.

This government funding, announced at the weekend, would help halve brain injuries during birth by 2025, Maternity Safety Minister Nadine Dorries said.

The committee’s report found although maternity safety had improved, the deaths of a number of newborn babies at several hospitals in recent years were a reminder much more needed to be done.

It highlighted: failings at University Hospitals of Morecambe Bay NHS Foundation Trust
major concerns at Shrewsbury and Telford Hospital NHS Trust and East Kent Hospitals University NHS Foundation Trust

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