Midwifery Expert Witness

Specialises in antenatal, intrapartum and postnatal care issues

A midwifery expert witness

Although it is normal to worry when pregnant, most pregnancies and births are uneventful.  But what about when things go wrong?  Problems during pregnancy and during delivery may lead to profound worry, fear and distress.  But in cases of clinical negligence, the loss is unbearable.

Why use a midwifery expert?

Where midwifery care falls short of professional standards, and there are breaches of duty, a midwifery expert witness may be called to give expert evidence to establish breach of duty and causation.  Instructing the right expert can be difficult.  Allow us to take the stress out of your search and allow us to suggest a suitably qualified and experienced midwife with trusted expert witness experience.

What sorts of practice may be reviewed in a case of clinical negligence?

Who might call upon the services of a midwifery expert?

Midwifery expert witness may be instructed by the claimant or the defendant.  In most cases, claimants will be represented by a solicitor but in some cases, we will accept instructions from litigants in person.  Most defendants will be NHS acute trusts, but we also accept instructions from private providers of obstetric and midwifery services, and other bodies like the Health Ombudsman.  Typically, instructions relate to breach of duty and causation in cases of clinical negligence.  Examples of harm which may arise from clinical negligence include injury to the baby, e.g. cerebral palsy and Erb’s palsy.  In cases such as these midwifery expert witnesses are required to provide expert opinions on whether the care team was negligent in the discharge of their professional duty and whether this negligent care caused, or contributed towards the injury.

Examples of negligent midwifery practice include:

  • CTG (cardio-tocograph) misinterpretation
  • Unrecognised antepartum haemorrhage (including placental abruption)
  • Development of pressure ulcers (particularly in mothers with a BMI of greater than 30 and in epidural labour)
  • Undiagnosed third degree perineal tears
  • Retained placental tissue resulting in secondary postpartum haemorrhage
  • Failure to recognise the significance of slow insidious vaginal bleeding within 24 hours of birth
  • Delays in recognising life threatening sepsis

Midwives may also be called to provide expert evidence for cases related to professional regulation and fitness to practice issues.

What sorts of practice may be reviewed in a case of clinical negligence?

  • Midwifery practice, standards & management
  • Midwifery training
  • Clinical risk management
  • Health & safety practices
  • Clinical negligence investigation & management
  • Reviewing practice documentation
  • Service and quality management

Why use Expert Court Reports?

Industry professionals

A good midwifery expert witness should come with years’ of midwifery practice as well as specific competencies to act as an expert witness.  Finding a midwife with experience of different clinical settings, be that hospital or community based care, is another important factor.  Look for someone who has accredited expert witness experience.  For example, someone who holds certification from Bond Solon.

Our midwifery expert, Jayne Utting, has over 23 years of experience as a midwife and is an accredited expert witness.  She accepts instructions from claimants and defendants in cases of clinical negligence.  In cases of professional regulation and fitness to practice, Jayne is able to provide expertise on behalf of registrants as well as the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC), the regulator for nursing and midwifery professions in the UK.

Quick turn around

At Expert Court Reports Ltd, we understand the pressures of the legal profession.  We recognise that litigation is subject to defined timescales and for this reason, we will be as flexible and accommodating as we are able to be.  However, we pride ourselves on not promising work that cannot be reliably delivered within a given timescale.  The quality of the evidence which is provided by our experts is subject to review and scrutiny.  All expert reports are subject to a detailed and robust proofreading process to ensure that our expert evidence is accurate and expertly formatted.

Looking for a midwifery expert witness?

Please call us on 01865 587865, email office@expertcourtreports.co.uk, or request a call by completing our online form to find out more about our midwifery expert witnesses and reports by clicking the link below.

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