The Birth Trauma Inquiry Report 

The Birth Trauma Inquiry Report is the result of the 6 week All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) inquiry, led by MPs Theo Clarke and Rosie Duffield. This significant report delves into the issue of birth trauma and its impact on individuals and families. It sheds light on the prevalence, causes, and consequences of birth trauma, providing invaluable insights into the challenges faced by individuals and families navigating the aftermath of traumatic childbirth experiences. It also goes on to recommend some much-needed policy changes and improved support mechanisms.

Key Findings of The Birth Trauma Inquiry Report


The report highlights the alarming prevalence of birth trauma, with about a third of women describing their birth experience traumatic. This underscores the need for increased awareness and recognition of this issue within the healthcare system, as well as the need for accountability and redress for those who have suffered harm due to substandard maternity care.


Birth trauma can have profound and lasting effects on individuals, ranging from physical to psychiatric injuries such as post-traumatic stress disorder (‘PTSD’), anxiety, and depression. There are also socio-economic consequences including the cost to the NHS of treating PTSD and birth injuries, the cost to the NHS of litigation, the effect on women’s relationship with her baby and partner, and the effect on women’s ability to return to the workplace. The report emphasises the importance of addressing these impacts through tailored support services.

Contributing Factors

Various factors contribute to the experience of birth trauma including failure to listen, lack of informed consent, communication breakdowns, and inadequate postnatal care. The inquiry identifies these factors as areas for improvement within maternity services.

Support Services

The report calls for enhanced support services for individuals and families affected by birth trauma, including accessible counselling, peer support groups, and trauma-informed care pathways. It emphasises the need for specialised training for healthcare professionals to better address the unique needs of trauma survivors.

View The Birth Trauma Inquiry Report 

Policy recommendations from the inquiry

Drawing on its findings, the inquiry puts forward a series of policy recommendations aimed at improving maternity care practices, including: 

  • Improved training for healthcare professionals involved in maternity care to enhance their understanding of birth trauma, its risk factors, and appropriate interventions. 
  • Strengthening policies and guidelines to ensure that expectant parents receive comprehensive information about potential interventions, risks, and alternatives during the childbirth process. 
  • Provision of better continuity of care and digitisation of mothers’ health records to ensure consistent support throughout pregnancy, childbirth, and the postnatal period and to reduce the likelihood of fragmented care and communication errors.
  • Universal access to specialist maternal mental health services and integration of routine screening for birth-related trauma into standard prenatal and postnatal care protocols.

The report was underpinned by some harrowing testimony of birth trauma throughout the 6 weeks process of evidence gathering. As medical negligence lawyers, we have much experience of women who have had traumatic birth injuries. We hope this report brings about some much needed change across the maternity services in the UK with meaningful rather than lip service outcomes for future mothers and their families. The impact of birth trauma can be lifelong with often a cost consequence to the NHS, so real improvements will also benefit healthcare providers from a financial perspective.

Maya Sushila

The Birth Trauma Inquiry Report: What happens now?

The Birth Trauma Inquiry Report serves as a wake-up call to policymakers, healthcare providers, and society at large, urging concerted efforts to address the issue of birth trauma. By implementing the recommended policy changes and bolstering support services, we can strive towards a future where every individual receives compassionate, respectful, and trauma-informed maternity care, thereby minimising the incidence and impact of birth trauma on families across the nation.


Supporting women. Challenging stigma. Driving change.

MASIC was one of the key charities involved with the All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) process. MASIC is a charity that advocates for women and aims to change the lives of those injured during childbirth.

How Moore Barlow can help

Our team of specialist medical negligence lawyers has been hand-picked for their specific skills and technical competence in the area of medical negligence claims.

Reaching a successful outcome demands not only expert medical negligence law knowledge but also an understanding of how the NHS and medical defence organisations arrive at settlement decisions.