15 April 2016
Baby’s Death Prompts Warning Over Caesarean ‘Cost-Cutting’
A coroner has warned of the ‘cost-cutting’ dangers of favouring natural births over Caesarean sections following the death of a newborn baby.
Tracey Taylor’s son, Kristian Jaworski, died after suffering brain damage when his mother was forced by doctors to have a vaginal delivery instead of the Caesarean she was told she would need in June 2015.
He was starved of oxygen when medics attempted to use suction and forceps before carrying out an emergency C-section and suffered brain injuries, dying five days later.
North Middlesex University Hospital has accepted liability for his death, but says costs were not involved.
But following an inquest into Kristian’s death, coroner Andrew Walker sent a report to the Department of Health in which he alleged that a vaginal delivery had been favoured for financial reasons.
He has now called for action to prevent future tragedies.
Ms Taylor was previously told that due to her narrow birth canal, which meant forceps were required for her first-born, a Caesarean would be needed.
Despite other doctors’ previous recommendations, staff at North Middlesex University Hospital in Edmonton ignored Ms Taylor’s pleas and the information was not recorded in her medical notes.
Ms Taylor told the BBC: “I don't want anyone else to go through the same thing. I feel that I was treated like an over-anxious woman who was too frightened to give birth.
"I went in there with a reason which is something that a woman wouldn't just make up. I was told I had a narrow birth canal."
Dr Cathy Cale, director of medicine at North Middlesex University Hospital, said: “Although the coroner did not find the trust negligent, we have accepted liability for Kristian's death because we accept we made mistakes.”
"As a result of our own detailed investigation, we have drawn up new guidance for all our staff about limiting prolonged instrumental delivery and avoiding the sequential use of instruments."
She added that steps had now been taken to make sure that any concerns around delivery are clearly recorded.
The Department of Health calculates the average cost of vaginal deliveries at around £2,000, while planned or emergency C-sections are more than £1,700 more.
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