Medics missed four chances to save baby Gino

Medics missed four chances to save baby Gino

A GRANDFATHER from Earlsheaton has criticised medics who missed four chances to save the life of a new-born baby.

Graham Ellis, of the Laurels, spoke after a verdict of death by misadventure was given at an inquest into the death of his grandson.

Gino Asquith was born at Calderdale Royal Hospital in Halifax on November 9, 2014, but lived for only three days.

Gino’s mother Sarah Ellis, of Staincliffe Hall Road, Batley, was previously turned away due to a lack of beds.

Coroner Oliver Longstaff ruled that delays were a factor in doctors not realising Sarah and her baby were in trouble.

Distraught Graham said: “It was disgusting the things that they should have spotted.

“There were four missed opportunities – not big ones, simple things, but they all added up.

“This was Sarah’s first child. It had all been planned and she had looked after herself throughout the pregnancy.

“She then put herself in the hands of somebody else. We’ve got to accept it but we’ll never forget what happened.”

Sarah, 28, had rejected the chance to give birth at Dewsbury District Hospital.

Graham said: “She only lives two minutes from there but having heard from friends and seen stories in the media, she decided it wouldn’t be suitable.”

Sarah’s ordeal began when she went into labour on November 7  and attended Calderdale Royal Hospital.

There were no beds available and she was told to go to the birthing centre at Huddersfield Royal Infirmary.

After a four-hour wait there, she was sent home on November 8 as her labour was not advanced enough.

Later that day Sarah could no longer feel her baby moving and went back to Halifax, where she was admitted to the maternity assessment unit.

Over the next six hours she was assessed by six midwives, a registrar and senior house officer.

Signs of distress were picked up. Among the symptoms shown by both mum and baby were abnormal heartbeats.

None of this was acted upon and the doctors failed to perform a Caesarean section when they realised the baby had a life-threatening infection.

There was another chance to do a C-section an hour later, when the baby was showing problems with his heart.

Further delays meant Sarah was not admitted to the adjoining maternity ward until 11.30pm.

By the time Gino was delivered by C-section at 2.34am on November 9, he was very poorly and had to be resuscitated twice.

Sarah and her partner Adam Asquith were advised to withdraw treatment, and Gino died on November 12. The cause of death was hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy  (brain damage caused by lack of oxygen).

Before the inquest in Bradford, the Calderdale and Huddersfield Foundation NHS Trust admitted liability for Gino’s death in a civil case.

An investigation by the trust found Sarah’s condition was not escalated to the obstetric team.

Communication was not clear between staff, there were delays transferring Sarah to a delivery room and she was not correctly monitored.

Coroner Mr Longstaff did not make any recommendations after hearing the hospital has changed its procedures.

These include adding an extra midwife, putting all patients together in one room and advanced training.

But he said: “At the very least the delays in Gino being delivered made the chance of him being born alive significantly reduced.

“Gino spent five and three-quarter hours at the hospital but it took only 12 minutes, after the decision was made, to perform an emergency Caesarean section.”

After the verdict, Sarah said: “Words can’t explain what we’ve been through in losing our first child together in this terrible way.

“It’s hard to accept that the delays we faced and the failure to pick up signs that Gino was in distress led to his death.

“The investigation into Gino’s death and the care we received from the trust found a number of failures.

“We hope these issues will be corrected so other people don’t have to endure what we went through.”

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