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The Early Notification Scheme For Birth Injuries From NHS Resolution: What is it?

Reasons to choose Wilson Browne

Inevitably, birth injuries can be distressing for any client and can affect their child for the rest of their life.

Some cases also involve ongoing future care and house adaptations; lives can be changed as a result. However, these cases are very complex and take some time before reaching a settlement.

The NHS Resolution have therefore implemented an Early Notification Scheme (ENS) in the hope to offer support to families and staff involved, and to allow them to start their investigations as early as possible to attempt to avoid delays in reaching settlement.

The Early Notification Scheme is a national programme for the early reporting to NHS Resolution of infants born with potential severe brain injuries following term labour.

In essence, the Legal Department of any Trust should be made aware of all maternity incidents of potentially severe brain injuries in babies born at term, within 14 days, following which the NHS Resolution will be informed within the following 30 days.

By complying with the above, the NHS believes that the Trusts show a sense of transparency with the incidents and can be candid with the families involved and lessons can be learnt from these incidents.

There are hopes that with the introduction of this scheme, there will be analysis as to what drives these incidents and as a result the idea is to half the rate of stillbirth, neonatal death and brain injuries together with improving the safety in maternity units.

It is recorded that “in its first year of operation – April 2017 to March 2018 – 746 qualifying cases were reported to the Early Notification Scheme”

The ENS sets out recommendations, a few of which are where families involved are offered an open and honest conversation in respect of their child’s care and an apology should be forthcoming from the trust. Further, the NHS identified that the staff involved in incidents can also be affected by the outcome and therefore packages are offered to the staff to allow intervention and to support their well being and address mental health. Another recommendation is the urgent need for “an evidence-based, standardised approach to fetal monitoring in England”.

Families will now be supported by charities that may be able to offer support for the tragic event they may have experienced.

Wilson Browne Solicitors are pleased that NHS Resolution is actively taking steps to offer help to families and are taking initiative in commencing their investigations as early as possible. It is still vitally important however those families are encouraged to obtain their own independent specialist legal advice to ensure their potential claim is properly investigated and valued.

Wilson Browne Solicitors have a specialist Clinical Negligence team with over 30 years experience of dealing with birth injury claims and Head of team Louise Tyler is a member of the Law Society and AvMA (Action against medical accidents) clinical negligence specialist panels.

Please feel free to telephone us on 0800 088 6004 if you would like to discuss this further.

Gemma Pabari


Gemma Pabari


Gemma is a Solicitor within the Medical Negligence Team. Gemma has experience in advising on a range of Medical Negligence claims, to include delays in diagnosing and treating Cauda Equina Syndrome, representing clients on matters arising from complications with pregnancy.