Clinical negligence lawyers are often told by clients  that they thought something was wrong but were provided with what is later found to have been false reassurance by medical practitioners.

New recommendations have now been implemented by NHS Improvement encouraging medical staff to listen to parents who report that their child is deteriorating even if medical tests show no cause for alarm. It is hoped that these recommendations will mean that parents of ill children will worry less about ‘time wasting’ and will feel encouraged to speak to medical staff about any of their concerns regarding their child’s health.

According to NHS Improvement, more than a quarter of preventable deaths in children and adults happen because changes in their condition are not properly monitored and go unnoticed by medical staff. The aim of these new recommendations is to encourage parents and families to notify medical staff of any changes quickly to avoid sudden deterioration and prevent rapid deaths from conditions such as sepsis and blood poisoning.

 Following the death of her daughter from acute disseminated encephalomyelitis, Joanna Hughes set up the support group, Mothers’ Instinct, and worked on the report with NHS Improvement.