'Lack of Care' - Coroner's report on baby's death after discharge from St. Peter's.

This is an inquest report taken from ‘Get Surrey’ this week – it deals with a very sad death last September.

I find it disturbing on two levels – St. Peter’s Hospital has been rightly criticised by the Coroner;

“Dr Henderson said: “There’s a lack of care and I say that very carefully in a coroner’s court because it’s very significant.”

Unfortunately because the Coroner didn’t hear evidence of any particular reason for the little girl’s death, she found an “Open Verdict”. This lets the Hospital off the Hook. We can come to our own conclusions on how advisable is is to send a baby home with the problems she had.

From a very personal note, I was admitted to St. Peter’s when I returned there with my misdiagnosed broken ankle on 3rd September last year and little Mia would have been born the next morning in the same building as me. That day, when I was waking up from my first operation I was on the floor above hers.

 Nine-day-old Mia Ridge had "lack of care" before her death, coroner says

 Get Surrey       Kevin Hurley 


"Questions need to be answered" by hospital staff following the death of a nine-day-old baby, a coroner has said.


Dr Karen Henderson made the comments at an inquest held last Friday (November 29) into the death of Mia Ridge in September 2012.


Woking Coroner’s Court heard that baby Mia was born on September 4 last year by caesarian section at St Peter’s Hospital, Chertsey, and taken to an emergency unit for a short period of time, due to a "husky tone to her breathing".


Her family was allowed to take her home to Weybridge two days later.


Father James Ridge told the inquest that Mia’s feeding was slow and she would doze off while being fed. During a second visit by a midwife on September 11, the family was advised to take Mia back to St Peter’s as she had lost weight.


The baby lost consciousness while feeding in hospital and could not be resuscitated. She died on September 13.


Jane Urben, interim head of midwifery at Ashford and St Peter’s Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, was not at the trust at the time but helped to put together a serious incident report following Mia’s death, which was not passed on to the family until the inquest.


She agreed with the coroner that Mia did not "appear to be fit enough to go home" when she was discharged after two days.

Dr Henderson said: “There’s a lack of care and I say that very carefully in a coroner’s court because it’s very significant.”


Dr Samantha Levine, a specialist in perinatal and paediatric pathology, conducted the post-mortem examination and could not find a cause of death despite testing for underlying problems such as infections, metabolic disorders and genetic abnormalities.

Summing up, Dr Henderson said Mia had been "quite unwell" until her hospital discharge, with an increased respiratory rate and was "blue at times".


“We know Mia was discharged from hospital and several days later readmitted. One did follow the other but it’s not possible, within the powers I have as coroner, to have a causal connection between them.

“I can’t say that if she stayed in hospital and was managed there, that her death would have been prevented. There’s insufficient evidence for me to be able to make that causal connection. Nevertheless I fully understand that questions need to be answered.”


An open verdict was recorded.

Neil Harris

(a don’t stop till you drop production) 

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