Left to die in hospital corridor

sorabji.com: What are you afraid of?: Left to die in hospital corridor

By spunky on Friday, December 19, 2003 - 10:11 pm:

    A WOMAN was left to give birth alone in a hospital corridor, then told she had no choice but to watch her premature baby die.

    Karen Middleton, from Parramatta, who was originally turned away with a diagnosis of constipation, claims that, despite pleas to save her child Harry at Westmead Hospital, she was left with the dead baby in her arms for an hour and a half.

    Yesterday, as the health crisis widened, Premier Bob Carr continued to throw his support behind beleaguered former health minister Craig Knowles and the health system - just before going on holidays.

    Last night, a spokesman for Mr Carr said Mr Knowles had his support despite confirmation that he would be under investigation by ICAC.

    New documents show that Mr Knowles failed to correct an inaccurate statement he made absolving the health system of any blame over a death at Nepean Hospital.

    "In typical form, he has performed a vanishing act in the face of Government cover-ups," Opposition Leader John Brogden said.

    This comes as The Daily Telegraph learned of two more hospital cases that have been reported to the coroner, and another family from the Central Coast who had two family members misdiagnosed.

    An 81-year-old woman died at RPA Hospital after an oxygen hose was placed in an air outlet by mistake in January, 2002.

    At Liverpool Hospital in December 2000, a 60-year-old woman admitted for a strangulated hernia caught a hospital infection and died.

    Two months ago Donald McLeod, who has now been told he has inoperable lung cancer, had his illness misdiagnosed as pneumonia at Gosford Hospital.

    Daughter Leanne McLeod said it was the second blow to her family after her grandmother, Ida Cook, died six days after her oesophagus was torn during a routine endoscopy at Wyong Hospital in September 2000.

    Mrs Middleton, who lost her child at Westmead Hospital, entered on January 14, 2002. Ten minutes after an ultrasound had been completed she went into labour on a bed left outside the room, despite continuing assurances a birth was not imminent.

    The ultrasound operator found her and shouted: "Where's the midwife, someone just gave birth in the corridor!"

    "They put me in a corridor where I had my son by myself, there was nobody there," Mrs Middleton said.

    "Then I kept on asking for help and they didn't ... 15 minutes later he just stopped crying and got colder and colder."

    Originally Mrs Middleton attended Westmead Hospital complaining of stomach pains and was sent home, diagnosed with constipation.

    Shortly after she returned, the 23-week pregnant mother of six was examined, during which time her waters broke. She was then sent for the ultrasound.

    An investigation by Western Sydney Area Health Service claimed that at 23 weeks the baby had no chance of survival.

    A letter from the area health service apologised to Ms Middleton for actions undertaken at the mortuary.



By eri on Saturday, December 20, 2003 - 11:30 am:

    "An investigation by Western Sydney Area Health Service claimed that at 23 weeks the baby had no chance of survival."

    If that baby came out at 23 weeks crying on it's own, which indicates that it was able to breathe on it's own for a period of time......it very well may have survived with proper medical care. That's how Micki came into the world, and she's doing so well now that you would never know she was born 3 months early.

    It's hard for me to accept this, cuz having had little preemies, and spending time in the NICU, I met plenty of other parents who had babies at 23 weeks or less and watched them grow amazingly over the next year or so. In all of my times in the NICU's, I have only heard of one infant dying, because he contracted a disease at a week old (that all preemies are at risk of), and the operation to correct it was not successful. He was born at 32 weeks and was a triplet. It was different all the way around.

    But this baby this poor woman had would at least have had a chance if he hadn't been left without medical care in a corridor for a half an hour. I mean, it could have been a simple D-Fib or Bradicardia episode that killed him, when a little oxygen tube in his nose, or a monitor with the proper infant massage could have saved what happened to this poor woman.

    I just find the whole thing hard to believe. Shockingly sad. Maybe because I have been thru it and have seen the babies live and have normal lives in the end.

By The Watcher on Monday, December 22, 2003 - 02:05 pm:

    And this is the kind of health care Hillery Clinton wants to bring here.

By dave. on Monday, December 22, 2003 - 04:40 pm:

    oh for crying out loud.

By wisper on Monday, December 22, 2003 - 08:49 pm:

    watcher, you have no idea what you're talking about.

By eri on Monday, December 22, 2003 - 10:35 pm:

    But this article does emphasise my fears about socialized medicine....not that I am saying what we have now is better...without experiencing it myself I cannot honestly say either way, and won't try to.

    When it comes to health care, the answer eludes me. To find what is best for people. Because it deals with more than finances but the people doing it, the people receiving it. It's so complex an issue.

    All I know is if that woman who gave birth had been me, I wouldn't have Micki today, but I also wouldn't have the $10,000 in medical bills either. I would rather have Micki, though. And the idea of anything otherwise scares me.

    It's something where everyone is going to have a different idea of what is best, because it deals with what is right for humanity, and everyone varies on what is best in each situation. It also deals with human faults, cuz doctors and nurses aren't Gods. And then there is the money aspect of what would be best for patients, doctors, nurses, and everyone else involved. It's complicated, and will always be imperfect.

By Rowlfe on Monday, December 22, 2003 - 10:42 pm:

    I've never waited longer than half an hour for a doctor. never had to make an appointment, and if it was an emergency, you say so and they basically treat you right away

    I had a severe panic attack a couple years ago and a swarm of doctors and nurses rushed to my aid when I went to the hospital...

    using this as a representative of 'socialized medicine' couldnt be any more bullshit, Watchykins

By TBone on Tuesday, December 23, 2003 - 01:06 am:

    The emphasis on this having been a poor woman implies that this was caused be the problems inherent in privatised medicine that wouldn't happen in socialized medicine.
    Go socialized medicine.

By TBone on Tuesday, December 23, 2003 - 01:20 am:

    Oh. Some confusion there. Didn't read everything.

By Antigone on Tuesday, December 23, 2003 - 11:35 am:

    To say this was caused by some particular kind of medicine (socialized or otherwise) is silly. It was caused by whatever conditions and medical personnel were at the place at that time. Period. To say otherwise is pure speculation, especially since no one here knows shit about the place. Anyone here ever been to that hospital? Anyone here ever been to a hospital in Liverpool? In the U.K.?

    Didn't think so.

    Anyway, medical mistakes that result in death are not exactly unheard of in the U.S. health system.

By spunky on Tuesday, December 23, 2003 - 11:55 am:

    Leaving a crying baby and her mom in the hallway of a hospital for an hour and a half goes beyond a "medical mistake".

By dave. on Tuesday, December 23, 2003 - 12:12 pm:

    whose fault is it she got pregnant? the hospital's? i'm sick of everybody blaming the hospitals for this, blaming the doctors for that, blaming the government for everything else. sometimes, it's tough consequences like this that are the only way some people can learn. maybe next time, she'll think a little bit before she gets herself into that situation.

By Antigone on Tuesday, December 23, 2003 - 12:20 pm:

    spunky, you have so much compassion for life, at least when it's politically convenient. You make such a fuss about this one death when you have no problem with thousands of others.

By patrick on Tuesday, December 23, 2003 - 01:00 pm:

    whoop whoop!

By spunky on Tuesday, December 23, 2003 - 03:18 pm:

    which thousands?
    the ones in New York?
    The ones Saddam had murdered in Iraq?
    The ones Saddam murdered in Kuwait?
    Close to a million in the last decade?

    Sometimes I think it is you guys who have the issues.

By Rowlfe on Tuesday, December 23, 2003 - 06:23 pm:

    yes spunk, thousands of lives...

    you dont care for...

    like how in the Revenge and Scapegoat/Distraction Wars the US has managed to kill umpteen times more people than had died in 9/11...

    you have no problem with this

    you have no problem going to war instead of waiting and finding out the truth and letting UN inspectors do their job and find other options...

By wisper on Tuesday, December 23, 2003 - 06:25 pm:

    oh, for crying out loud...


    except dave.

By spunky on Tuesday, December 23, 2003 - 07:26 pm:

    "you have no problem going to war instead of waiting and finding out the truth and letting UN inspectors do their job and find other options..."

    twelve years and 16 UN Resolutions.

By Rowlfe on Tuesday, December 23, 2003 - 08:10 pm:

    lets take it to the other thread spunk

By dave. on Wednesday, December 24, 2003 - 03:24 am:

    so... whisper...whats up?

By wisper on Wednesday, December 24, 2003 - 06:55 pm:

    i forgot to buy my mom a birthday present.
    i am the worst kid in the world.
    This has never happened before.
    Her birthday is x-mas eve and i've never once fucked it up, as shitty as it is.

    her x-mas gift isn't even big enough to count for both. Goddamn christmas babies!
    i'm supposed to be there asap!

    Luckily i have several crafts on the go that she can have.
    this is really terrible. I'm so unorganized this christmas.

    and you?


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