CLS assists family to get apology for avoidable baby death

04 September 2017

On 12/04/2013 Miss Chloe Turner should have been celebrating the birth of her second daughter, Lola. However due to the admitted negligence of Colchester Hospital University NHS Foundation Trust (‘Colchester Hospital’) Chloe’s baby passed away after just 71 minutes of life.

At an Inquest in 2013 Colchester Hospital denied responsibility and contributed to a finding of natural causes by the Coroner. Chloe was not happy with the outcome and sought alternative legal representation and instructed Curtis Law Solicitors LLP, Blackburn.

Jerard Knott, Head of Medical Negligence and Serious Injury, who acted for the family, explained that “it seemed clear from after initial instructions that something had gone devastatingly wrong during Chloe’s labour and the case needed further investigation.”

Following medical evidence it became clear that Chloe had been given syntocinon for far too long and that when there was insufficient progress and a subsequent bradycardic event Colchester Hospital had missed the opportunity to intervene by way of an emergency caesarean section.

Colchester Hospital’s representatives subsequently admitted that had a caesarean section been performed prior to 17:20, rather than at 18:12 Lola would have survived and would more likely than not have been healthy.

On 31/08/2017 after some lengthy additional negotiation settlement was reached for a substantial, but at the request of the family, undisclosed sum.

Jerard added that “This is a tragic and entirely avoidable event. Proper monitoring, treatment and intervention would have meant that Lola would have been born healthy. Unfortunately there are too many birth injuries that can be avoided in English hospitals. The Trust have moved on and said they have learned their lessons and finally apologised. For Chloe the impact is that save for some mementoes, her other children will never have the sister they should have had, how can you ever explain that as a parent.”

The family’s story was run in the local Harwich and Manningtree Standard.

Jerard, an APIL Accredited Clinical Negligence Specialist, explained that “in the UK, each year between 500 and 800 babies die or are left with severe brain injury – not because they are born too soon or too small, or have a congenital abnormality, but because something goes wrong during labour. This is not acceptable and this figure must improve. At Curtis Law our specialist Medical Negligence Team offer a national service and unfortunately we see too many examples of avoidance birth injury.”

The Medical and Serious Injury Team at Curtis Law is led by Jerard Knott, Associate Solicitor. We are committed to promoting Patient Safety. The team only acts for Claimants and is dedicated to providing a client care centered high level of service, providing the best possible advice and maximising damages. The department acts on a large number of fatal (including representation at Inquests) and high value cases. The department regularly advises on cases with valuation exceeding £1,000,000. We can be contacted on 01254 297130 or


Jerard Knott

Head of Medical Negligence and Serious Injury

APIL Accredited Clinical Negligence Specialist