Parents whose babies died during childbirth at an Ayrshire hospital have called for a public inquiry into the circumstances surrounding their deaths.

Following the call for a public enquiry, published on BBC News website on 21 November, Clea Harmer, Chief Executive of Sands commented:

“The death of a baby shatters the lives of parents and families, but tragically over 300 babies die each year in Scotland with over 5,500 deaths across the UK. To know your baby’s death was potentially preventable is unbearable, yet recent national enquiries have shown that with better care the deaths of 6 out of 10 otherwise healthy babies at the end of pregnancy, might have been avoided. 

“Sands has long called for high quality, local review of every stillbirth and neonatal death so that essential lessons can be learned, and for accountability to ensure improvements to care are actually implemented to avoid repeated errors. We welcome the announcement of an external review of the care at Crosshouse Hospital and urge the investigation to take full account of the families’ concerns about their care from the outset. 

“Sands supports anyone affected by the death of a baby, from when they find out their baby has died through to the weeks, months and years that follow. If bereaved parents in Ayrshire and indeed anywhere in Scotland need our help and advice, they can call our national Helpline on 020 7436 5881 or email helpline@uk-sands.org.”