HSE apologises over failings in care at Portlaoise hospital in case in which baby girl died

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 HSE apologises over failings in care at Portlaoise hospital in case in which baby girl died

Midlands Hospital Portlaoise

The HSE has apologised in the High Court for failings in relation to the care provided at the Midland Regional Hospital, Portlaoise when a baby girl died eleven years ago.

RTE is reporting that the apology was read out in court to the parents of baby Ciara Loughlin. In it the HSE offered "sincere apologies for the failings in relation to the care provided at the hospital on 21 and 22 August, 2007."

The RTE report says that the HSE also accepted that the medical records of Ciara's mother Elizabeth Loughlin were altered in relation to the timing of her admission to the hospital on 21 August, 2007 and it said it regretted that.

The HSE also apologised for the distress suffered to Elizabeth and John Loughlin in respect of the death of their daughter and offered its deepest condolences.

It is reported that the Loughlins from Lough, Portarlington have settled their action against the HSE for nervous shock over the death of their baby Ciara. The details of this settlement are confidential.

They had sought to discover what happened to their daughter who died after a caesarean birth after an RTÉ Prime Time programme about the deaths of four babies at the Midland Regional Hospital Portlaoise was aired in 2014.

It was claimed that Mrs Loughlin went into labour at about 10.30pm on 21 August, 2007 and was admitted to the Midland Regional Hospital and that a CTG was carried out which allegedly showed a grossly abnormal heart rate.

It was further claimed there was an alleged failure to respond to the CTG and manage or treat Mrs Loughlin adequately or appropriately in that an emergency caesarean section was not carried out until 12.25am on 22 August, 2007.

Baby Ciara was delivered five minutes later and was resuscitated but she did not survive. It was alleged that Ciara's death was represented to the Loughlins as unavoidable.

The Loughlins were devastated, shocked and extremely upset by the events which had occurred but tried to get on with their lives, it was claimed.

As a result of an RTÉ Investigates programme in January 2014 it was claimed the Loughlins wanted to discover what had happened to baby Ciara.

The Loughlins, it was claimed, found the contents of the RTÉ programme extremely shocking and distressing and it re-awoke in them all the trauma and upset they had suffered and tried to suppress.

They attended a meeting on the hospital premises in April 2014 and viewed their file and medical notes for the first time since their daughter's death.

It was claimed that at this meeting it became known to the Loughlins that their medical file or records relating to Baby Ciara had been allegedly deliberately altered and in particular Mrs Loughlin's time of arrival at the hospital had been allegedly altered.

It was alleged the alteration was done in order to impact the Loughlins' case and to allegedly place an impediment in relation to the Loughlins' medical expert’s examination of the records.

The claims were denied.