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Premature Baby Left To Die Alone In Sluice Room At Failing NHS Hospital

Leading Clinical Negligence Lawyers Call For Trust To Be More Transparent After Local Paper Unearthed ‘Secret’ Report

24.11.2016

A premature baby was left to die alone in a room used for emptying bed pans by hospital staff, a damning ‘secret’ report has revealed.

A review of Royal Oldham Hospital and North Manchester General Hospital by Pennine Acute Hospitals NHS Trust revealed a catalogue of other “unacceptable situations” where babies and mothers suffered due to poor medical decisions and lack of facilities.

Among the report’s shocking revelations was the case of a mother misdiagnosed with mental health issues who was in fact suffering from a “catastrophic haemorrhage”. She later died.

But in perhaps the most harrowing incident, a baby born at 22 weeks and six days, just below the legal age of viability, was placed in a Moses basket and “left in the sluice room to die alone,” instead of with her mother.

The internal report, exposed by the Manchester Evening News, found mothers suffered “unacceptable risk” and that long-term failings led to “high levels of harm for babies”.

Expert Opinion
“This report makes for distressing reading and highlights some disturbing practices, in particular the inhumane treatment of an ailing infant who was denied a dignified death in the arms of her mother.

“We have seen first-hand the impact that losing a child has had on our clients. The lack of compassion shown to this baby in her short and fleeting life adds to the trauma of an already devastating turn of events.

“To learn that there was initially no intention of making this report public, until the Manchester Evening News became involved will also be of significant concern to patients of the Trust, especially mothers-to-be who put their faith in these organisations to help them through an incredibly challenging and important time in their lives. This is all the more concerning given the NHS “duty of candour” which Trusts are supposed to adhere to.

“The fact that these events occurred in the first place is shocking, but equally unacceptable is the fact that this practice only came to light following pressure from local journalists.

“It is important therefore that Pennine Acute Hospitals NHS Trust learns from these mistakes, and makes a commitment to be more open and transparent with its patients when such findings are made. Only then can they inspire public confidence, improve patient safety and regain the trust of those they serve.”
Mark Havenhand, Partner

If you’ve suffered illness or injury after poor care in hospital, our clinical negligence lawyers could help you claim compensation. See our Hospital Negligence Claims page for more information.


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