ADVICE AND INFORMATION
AvMA – Action Against Medical Accidents
I wish I had been aware of AvMA as soon as Jasmine died. They have specialists working for them who have expert knowledge of how best to approach the complaints process, prepare for an inquest, or choose legal representation if needed. AvMA is ‘the’ UK charity for patient safety and justice'. They provide free and confidential clinical negligence support. Visit their website for further information.
In particular, the section designed specifically for families and the handbook available to read online or to order as a hard copy I think are particularly useful
NHS England Learning from Deaths
This guidance sets out what trusts are expected to do after the death of someone's loved one in their care, and how they must engage with families throughout. At the end of the trusts guidance there is a leaflet that should have been given to you already by the trust that was looking after your child. You will find this information useful so that you know what should be happening and what you can ask for.
Child Bereavement UK
The website is filled with support resources and infomration, including a searchable database to find a support group close to where you live. They also offer a helpline.
The Compassionate Friends
TCF is a charitable organisation of bereaved parents, siblings and grandparents dedicated to the support and care of other bereaved parents, siblings, and grandparents who have suffered the death of a child/children. They offer support both directly to bereaved families and indirectly by fostering understanding and good practice amongst professionals concerned with child death and by increasing public awareness.
They recognise that many who have suffered the loss of a child feel a bond with others similarly bereaved and wish to extend the hand of friendship.
Care for the Family – Bereaved Parents Support
The Bereaved Parent Support team want to help any parent who has lost a son or daughter of any age, in any circumstance and at any stage along their journey of grieving.
Everyone has heard of the Samaritans. They offer a 24/7 telephone support service for times of crisis. I found there were many times in the first few months after Jasmine died that I needed someone to talk to in the lonely hours in the middle of the night. They were there to listen.
This useful directory lists some options for a bereavment counsellor close to where you live.