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Maternity Services: East Kent

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 11:06 am on 13th February 2020.

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Photo of Dr Caroline Johnson Dr Caroline Johnson Conservative, Sleaford and North Hykeham 11:06 am, 13th February 2020

I should mention at the start of my question that I work as a consultant paediatrician, and that I look after babies and have attended a number of deliveries. I would like to thank the Minister for being so thorough, robust and dedicated in ensuring that this situation improves and that babies are safely delivered throughout the country. In my practice, I have noticed that all baby deaths and adverse outcomes are thoroughly investigated locally, but in my experience this tends to be done just locally. The lessons might be shared internally, but they are not being shared with other hospitals down the road, where the same mistake might be made. I welcome what she is doing, but can she reassure me that those lessons will be shared nationally, so that everyone can benefit from the lessons that are learned, and that such sharing will be widespread so that future tragedies are prevented? Can she also reassure me that, when she sets up the Healthcare Safety Investigation Branch process, its culture is such that doctors, nurses and midwives are able to give full and free answers, and that we get the balance between accountability and blame just right?