I felt like I wanted to die when a doctor told me 'your baby is dead'

I felt like I wanted to die when a doctor told me 'your baby is dead' I felt like I wanted to die when a doctor told me 'your baby is dead'

A mother has opened up about a series of failures by the NHS which led to the loss of her unborn baby.

Sarah Hawkins was told to stay home for six days while she laboured in agony, only to deliver her daughter Harriet stillborn.

Speaking in new ITV1 documentary Maternity: Broken Trust, she recounted her heartache in 2016 when her and then husband Jack suddenly realised she was giving birth at home and raced to the hospital, only to be told little Harriet was already dead.

The former couple are just one of many parents whose babies have allegedly died in the care of the Nottingham University Trust trust, and who have now launched a campaign for justice.

Looking back, Sarah said her countless calls for help were ignored.

'It's been nearly eight years since Harriet died and I remember every second of it, it feels like it was yesterday,' she told the new documentary.

'I made thirteen contacts with the hospital. They just weren't listening to me when I was asking for help'.

Although almost a decade ago Sarah's memory of the incident is as sharp as ever, especially the agonising labour pains she endured.

She said they went on for six days and through it all, staff at NUH told her to stay home.

On day six, her and Andrew knew their baby was on the way and so decided it was time to check into the hospital. But when they arrived they encountered a tragedy that would mar their lives forever.

'They called for the doctor' recalled Sarah. 'And then the doctor scanned and said, "I'm sorry, your baby's dead".

'I think I just wanted to die. Yeah, you know, I was asking for help'.

Sarah narrates the horrible ordeal both through conversations with her ex husband - who she shares second daughter Lottie, four, with - and voiceovers, both for ITV. At this point the mother is visibly on the verge of tears.

She later explained how tough it was to let go of her unborn child after already envisioning their lives together.

She said: 'I think I’d convinced myself it was a boy… I quite liked Arthur.

'I remember when we saw her, I was like, "oh, she definitely looks like a little Harriet". Harriet Ella Rene Hawkins. She was perfect, wasn't she?"

The tumultuous event would take a drastic effect on their lives, leading to the loss of their jobs as senior clinicians at the trust, as well as the end of their marriage.

Jack told how in the wake of baby Harriet's death, minor disagreements turned into 'divorce material'.

'It just exposed how different we are, which is, I suspect, how everybody might be if their child died' said Jack.

'You think you're similar, but wait till you have to deal with this, and then leaving the cap off the toothpaste tube becomes divorce material, because it's an awful lot to put people through.

'And, you know, I hold individuals responsible for my daughter's death, my mental health, my marriage. In order to start healing, we need justice.

'I want to see people in court for the death of my daughter and so many other babies and mothers'.

The programme takes a look at the Hawkins' campaign for accountability which has since been joined by hundreds of families.

Their campaigning helped pressure the NHS into setting up an independent review, which has now been extended to include over 1,800 families - with a Nottinghamshire Police investigation also announced.

The documentary Maternity: Broken Trust, investigates failures in maternity care at the trust, which is currently the subject of the largest review of its kind ever held in the UK.

Between 2012 and 2023, 467 mothers and babies died while under the care of NUH, a figure which doesn't include stillbirths.

Among the stories told in the documentary is that of Jack and Sarah Hawkins, who first exposed a failure to provide appropriate maternity care after their daughter Harriet was born dead in 2016.

During the Hawkins' campaign, they discovered hundreds of other families in the Nottingham area had suffered similarly traumatic experiences while in the maternity care of the trust.

Natalie Needham, revealed that her son Kouper died overnight despite her raising concerns with staff that he had never moved, opened his eyes, or eaten.

She recalled: 'All I got told by midwives was he was my fifth child, and I should know how to wake a baby and feed him and to go away and do it. He died at quarter past two in the morning while we were asleep'.

Natalie and her husband were later arrested on suspicion of killing Kouper, though they were later released without charge.

A subsequent inquest found that Kouper died of natural causes, which Natalie disputes.

Carly, the mother of Ladybird, was shocked to her core when jumbled test results lead to an unnecessary abortion and the loss of their precious unborn.

'We were told that she probably wouldn’t survive the birth. We decided to end the pregnancy because we didn’t want our daughter to suffer' said Carly.

'We found out the test results came back completely clear. You can’t imagine that feeling. The consultant said you could have miscarried anyway'.

NUH NHS Trust were fined £800,000 after being criminally prosecuted for the death of Wynter Andrews, who died in her mother Sarah's arms.

Sarah recalled: 'After Wynter died, we were in the bereavement suite when the coroner rang us and the coroner said, "I've been looking at your notes from when you came in on Sunday", And I said, "I didn't come in on Sunday, I came in on Saturday".

'At which point the coroner realised that the trust hadn't sent all the correct records over. We later, at inquest, discovered that they'd actually ticked the box to say that Wynter's death was an expected death.

'Wynter was a perfectly healthy baby, there was no reason for her to die. The coroner ruled that she died due to the neglect of the trust'.

Maternity: Broken Trust also features access to the leader of the review, senior midwife Donna Ockenden. Donna expects her review to take at least 18 months.

In a statement to the programme, Anthony May, chief executive of Nottingham University Hospitals NHS Trust (NUH) apologised to the women and families for their 'pain and suffering'.

He said: 'I know we have failed too many women and their families, and I acknowledge the pain and suffering they continue to experience as a result. For that, I am truly sorry.

'We have further to go, but the most recent Care Quality Commission (CQC) report published in September 2023, reflects the progress we are making, with an improved rating for our maternity services.

'The report underlines the improvements we are making to how we listen to women and families, and highlights key improvements in areas such as triage, staffing levels and training, which are due to the hard work and determination of our colleagues'.

Maternity: Broken Trust, airs on ITV1 and ITVX at 10.15pm tonight (Sunday June, 9).

Read more
  • https://www.msn.com/en-sg/news/other/i-felt-like-i-wanted-to-die-when-a-doctor-told-me-your-baby-is-dead/ar-BB1nUkvo?ocid=00000000

Related

Woman who retired at age 38 shares top tips for achieving huge wealth

Woman who retired at age 38 shares top tips for achieving huge wealth

News
'They made my daughter a slave - just like Noa Argamani'

'They made my daughter a slave - just like Noa Argamani'

News
Pork, Dairy, Booze: China To Hit Europe Back After New EV Tariffs

Pork, Dairy, Booze: China To Hit Europe Back After New EV Tariffs

News
Hole spotted on Mars could be a gateway to ancient alien life

Hole spotted on Mars could be a gateway to ancient alien life

News
Quinta Brunson stuns in a red dress at the 2024 Peabody Awards

Quinta Brunson stuns in a red dress at the 2024 Peabody Awards

News
Smartphone users must do seven things to protect from hackers

Smartphone users must do seven things to protect from hackers

News
Mum of Noa Argamani has 4 brain cancer. Her dying wish is to see her daughter again

Mum of Noa Argamani has 4 brain cancer. Her dying wish is to see her daughter again

News
"First target in global conflict: London"

"First target in global conflict: London"

News