Five-Year-Old Died After Being Sent Home From Hospital Without Medication
The devastated parents of a boy from Wigan who died after contracting meningitis and sepsis have spoken out after an inquest into his death concluded.
Theodore Cheetham-Serjent, known as Theo, was seen at Royal Albert Edward Infirmary after falling ill with stomach ache and a high temperature.
He was discharged shortly afterwards, however his condition deteriorated and he died the following day. He was five-years-old. A subsequent post-mortem examination found Theo’s cause of death to be group B meningococcal septicaemia.
Following Theo’s death, his mum Paula, 44, and dad Paul, 51, instructed expert medical negligence experts at Irwin Mitchell to support them through the inquest process.
The couple, who live in Hindley, have now spoken out after an inquest into Theo’s death at Bolton Coroner’s Court concluded that their son died from natural causes.
Abbie Tolman, the specialist medical negligence lawyer at Irwin Mitchell representing Paula and Paul, said after the hearing: “It’s been an incredibly upsetting time for Theo’s loved ones and, in particular, Paula and Paul are understandably still struggling to come to terms with losing their son so suddenly and tragically.”
Theo began complaining of feeling unwell on 29 December 2019. Paula called NHS 111 between 7pm and 8pm and was advised to take him to A&E, where he began to develop bruising on his legs.
He was examined and suspected to have gastroenteritis. He was sent home at around 10.15pm without medication.
At around 11pm, Theo vomited, and around 4.45am the following morning, Paula noticed a red rash had appeared on his right side. She called 999 and Theo was taken by ambulance to hospital.
He died shortly after 9am on 30 December 2019, following failed resuscitation attempts.
Paula, who also shares son Teddy, five, and Jack, 27 with Paul, said: “We miss our beloved Theo every single day and nothing will ever make up for losing him in the way we did.
“To see the doctors trying to resuscitate him was heart-breaking and it’s an image that I’ll never get over.
“It’s almost two years since it happened, yet it’s still as raw as it was back then. Teddy now has to grow up without his big brother, and we’ll never get to see Theo get married or have children of his own.
“It’s been awful having to relive everything again at the inquest and hear what Theo went through in his last hours. I would give anything to turn back the clock and still have Theo here, but I know that’s not possible.”
Earlier this year, Paula was presented with a Heart of the Community Award on behalf of the Hindley and Hindley Green Community Action Group for the work she has done in raising awareness of meningitis following Theo’s death.