Is this yet another CPS car-crash in the making?
Dr Katrina Erskine, consultant gynaecologist and head of obstetrics at Homerton Hospital, Hackney, said she was angered by the case selected for the first prosecution because it gave a “misleading” impression of FGM, and risked deterring other doctors and midwives from giving appropriate care to affected women.
This isn’t the usual ‘no! not us, we’re special!’ backlash from the medical profession, though. And it may well put the wind up the CPS:
Dr Erskine’s criticisms, coming from a senior gynaecologist with wide experience of FGM, will alarm the CPS – which urgently needs a successful prosecution.
Yes, indeed. They need it to detract from the Yewtree carnage, if nothing else!
At Homerton Hospital, women who have undergone this FGM are offered the opportunity to have the opening extended in preparation for the birth before the baby arrives in a process called defibulation. However, in some cases this is not done until after labour has started. After birth, stitching can be necessary to stem the bleeding, Dr Erskine claims.
“You have to stop any bleeding and that inevitably involves some suturing [stitching]. It would be completely misleading to call this FGM. The end result might look like FGM but it is not. This is conflating FGM with how to treat women post-labour.”
Surely the CPS have had this for so long they’ve made sure it’s a watertight case, with no margin for confusion?