Misdiagnosis of Meningitis Leads to Baby Death
Guy Forster, a medical law expert with Irwin Mitchell Solicitors, who represents Mr & Mrs Eaves, said: "Dean and Rachael are pleased that the GMC panel accepted their version of events rather than Dr Ebo's. They now await the panel's decision as to whether Dr Ebo's fitness to practice is impaired."
Background to case:
On August 18th 2004, 9 month old baby Liam Eaves, from Coventry, became unwell. He had a persistent cough, was grey in colour and kept shuddering. He was taken to the family's GP who prescribed painkillers and diagnosed a suspected ear infection.
That afternoon Liam's condition deteriorated further. He had become listless and his eyes had a glazed appearance. His Mother also noticed a rash at the top of his left thigh and when she performed the 'tumbler test' the rash did not blanch. She took him back to the surgery but was again told by GP, Dr Ebo, that everything was fine. Later that evening when Liam was given his night feed he was violently sick and the family phoned NHS Direct who sent an ambulance.
Two paramedics attended Mr & Mrs Eaves' home and asked for a history of Liam's illness. They were reassured by the GP's diagnosis that it was a virus. The paramedics asked the parents if they wanted Liam to go to hospital but also suggested that it was not necessary. As Mr & Mrs Eaves were given the impression that they were over-reacting, they reluctantly signed the form to say Liam would not be transported to hospital.
After the paramedics left, Mrs Eaves put Liam to bed and at around 11pm, went to check on him. She noticed the rash had spread and large purple patches were now visible. The couple again phoned NHS Direct who despatched another ambulance. This time the paramedics seemed very concerned about Liam's condition and immediately put a drip into his leg before rushing him to Coventry's Walsgrave Hospital.
There doctors battled to save baby Liam. His parents were warned that he might not survive. A priest was called to carry out a baptism and at 3.45am on August 18th 2004, baby Liam sadly died as a result of meningococcal septicaemia.
In May 2008, civil action was successful concluded with an undisclosed out of court settlement.