The East Kent Hospitals Trust has admitted failing to provide safe care and treatment for Sarah Richford and her baby Harry, who sadly died seven days after he was born in 2017.
An independent review of maternity services at the trust is ongoing after a series of failings led to the deaths of up to 15 babies.
“Our hearts go out to Sarah and Tom Richford and all their family; Sands is here for them and for anyone grieving for a much-loved baby. It is so very sad that Harry’s death was preventable, and that since he died in 2017 many more babies’ deaths could also have been prevented.
“It is vital for parents to understand what has happened to their baby – and for any lessons to be learnt and acted on so that the same thing doesn’t happen again in the future. Parents tell us this time and again. Sarah and Tom were incredibly brave to speak out and to seek answers. Sands believes that all parents must be listened to and be able to have faith that the response they will get will be open, timely and joined up.
“There must be an integrated maternity safety system that identifies problems early and supports NHS Trusts to improve, following up with Trusts to check that recommendations have been put into practice.
“At Sands we are working hard to improve care, working with the NHS and government, and to support Trusts to make vital improvements. If the UK is to be the safest place in the world to have a baby we need a culture of openness where human errors or systemic failings are acknowledged and tangible changes are made to ensure mothers and babies are given the best possible care throughout pregnancy, labour and birth.”
- Clea Harmer, Chief Executive at Sands
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