The devastated parents of a baby who died at a short-staffed hospital after bungling medics delayed delivering him for TWO hours have received a substantial pay-out after suing the NHS.
Ford Ham was severely starved of oxygen after mum Lesley Broughton, 31, went into labour on October 3, 2010.
Lesley begged staff at Alexandra Hospital in Redditch, Worcs., to deliver her baby boy by emergency caesarean when they struggled to find his heartbeat at 7.15am.
Shockingly, despite the mum-of-two’s pregnancy being high-risk, midwives waited another two hours to take her to theatre.
Ford was eventually delivered at 9.39am with no signs of life and despite attempts to resuscitate him, he tragically passed away 20 minutes later.
The family launched legal action against Worcestershire Acute Hospitals NHS Trust after medics admitted the delays in delivering Ford caused his death.
Today, it emerged the Trust have since admitted full responsibility for Ford’s death following the “appalling catalogue of failings” by midwives.
They have agreed an undisclosed out-of-court settlement with Lesley and her partner Jason Ham, 24.
But the couple from Kings Norton, Birmingham, say the heartbreaking experience has put them off trying for children again.
The full-time mum, who lives with her two children Sophie, 11, and six-year-old Ellie, from a previous relationship, said: “We are both still raw. I think about it every day.
“My friend was due at the same time as me so every time I see her little boy it makes me think that is how Ford should be now.
“From 7.15am I knew there were problems but it still took two hours to take me to theatre because they were short-staffed.
“I was going mad because I was in that much pain. I knew it was a lot stronger than labour pains. I was losing so much blood I thought I was going to die.
“I don’t remember the caesarean and needed further surgery.
“Ford was born at 9.39am but they didn’t tell me he was dead until 3.40pm the same day.
“A doctor came and told me when I was on my own and then just walked off.
“They have admitted if they had taken me down to theatre at 7.15am Ford would’ve been alive and he would’ve been a health baby.
“Ford would have been our first child together and we were excited to welcome him into the family.
“We’re reluctant to try for another baby now because we have lost faith in maternity services.”
“I’m not the person I used to be – I have some good days, some bad days.”
After the death of her son, Lesley had to spend a further three weeks in hospital recovering from blood loss and further complications from surgery.
Lesley claims that when she was had recovered, a doctor at the hospital told her it was time she started trying for another baby.
She added: “Three weeks after losing Ford, the doctor said it’s about time I got over it and tried again.
“I said that’s horrible.
“The main reason I did this was so I can do the next stage and take them to the General Medical Council – I want somebody to be held accountable for this.
“We welcome the apology but nothing can bring him back or make up for the pain we continue to suffer.”
Tom Riis-Bristow, a medical law expert from Irwin Mitchell solicitors, who represented the family, added: “This is a tragic case that has seen a young couple left devastated by the loss of their first child together.
“What is clear is that midwives made an appalling catalogue of failings and ignored a number of clear signs that Lesley should be rushed for an emergency caesarean to save Ford’s life.
“It’s hard to comprehend why more was not done to investigate why Lesley was in so much pain and losing so much blood, particularly given that staff were aware she was a high risk pregnancy.”
A hospital spokeswoman added: “Worcestershire Acute Hospitals NHS Trust apologises for the failings in care given to Ford and his family.
“The Trust has admitted responsibility and offered a full apology to the family for Ford’s death.
“The Trust is pleased a financial settlement has now been reached with his family and extends its condolences during what would continue to be a difficult time for Ford’s family.”