Tragedy Unfolds as Midwife’s Misjudgment Leads to Newborn’s Death in Home Birth Debacle in West Sussex

In a heart-wrenching inquest, a midwife is under scrutiny for misjudging a mother’s birthing experience, leading to the tragic death of her newborn son two weeks post-emergency C-section.

Robyn Davis, 28, a trained midwife herself, accused her former colleagues of negligence, asserting that her concerns during the home birth were repeatedly dismissed.

Despite her ‘birth plan’ not incorporating the popular pain management technique, hypno-birthing, the midwife attending her, Gillian Goodwin, claimed Mrs. Davis’s behavior resembled that of hypno-birthing mothers, creating a dangerous assumption.

Concerns Ignored: Negligence Allegations Surface

Mrs. Davis, who had opted for a home birth, expressed feeling unsafe throughout the labor, with her concerns consistently brushed aside.

The midwife attending her, Ms. Goodwin, suggested that Mrs. Davis was using hypno-birthing, a technique not specified in her birth plan but inferred from her behavior.

As the labor progressed, worries about the baby’s heart rate arose, leading to a decision to transfer Mrs. Davis to the hospital. However, upon arrival, there was reportedly no one waiting for her, exacerbating the already dire situation.

Rapid Deterioration: Emergency Transfer and Tragic Outcome

The emergency transfer to Worthing Hospital, West Sussex, took a critical turn when Mrs. Davis suffered seizures, ultimately leading to her being placed in a coma.

The previously healthy baby boy, Orlando, born through an emergency C-section on September 10, 2021, tragically passed away just two weeks later, despite the pregnancy initially being assessed as ‘low risk.’

The inquest heard allegations of failure to monitor Mrs. Davis’s ‘fluid consumption and urine output’ during labor, pointing to potential lapses in maternity care.

Midwife’s Perspective: Hypno-Birthing Assumption and Critical Handover Miscommunication

Ms. Goodwin, a midwife with 17 years of experience, detailed her arrival at the Davis’ household, where Mrs. Davis seemed initially to be ‘acting like a normal person in labor.’

However, concerns about the baby’s well-being escalated, leading to the decision for an emergency transfer.

Ms. Goodwin refuted having informed a fellow midwife about Mrs. Davis using hypno-birthing during a handover at the hospital.

Yet, the inquest previously heard that the midwife apologized to Mrs. Davis, assuming her use of the technique, contributing to a critical miscommunication.

Legal Claims: Allegations of Negligence and Lack of Safe Maternity Care

In the aftermath of this devastating event, solicitors for Robyn and Jonny Davis allege a ‘basic lack of safe maternity care’ provided by NHS staff.

CL Medilaw, representing the couple, asserts that medics failed to monitor Mrs. Davis’s fluid intake, leading to a seizure and the need for an emergency C-section.

The consequences, they argue, resulted in Orlando being deprived of oxygen, leading to fatal brain damage. Mrs. Davis, who had previously worked as a midwife at the hospital, left citing stress and lack of support for the midwifery team.

Personal Struggles and PTSD: Lingering Impact on Parents’ Health

Mrs. Davis, in her testimony, expressed feeling unheard and trapped during the labor, with her concerns consistently overlooked.

The consequences extend beyond the tragic loss of their newborn, as both she and Jonny Davis have been diagnosed with PTSD, highlighting the profound and lasting impact of the traumatic experience.

The ongoing inquest, expected to last three more days, delves deeper into the circumstances surrounding this heartbreaking incident, seeking accountability and understanding in the face of an unimaginable loss.

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