Doctor ‘amended record’ after death of baby, inquiry hears
Dr A facing allegations of professional misconduct at Portlaoise hospital
It is alleged Dr A failed to review the cardiotocograph (CTG) adequately and failed to correctly interpret the CTG as being abnormal. Photograph: Istock
A mother whose baby boy died at Portloaise hospital has described how her birth suddenly went from “no alarm bells and no panic” to “we’re not getting him”.
A fitness to practice inquiry begun on Tuesday into a doctor involved in the delivery of baby Mark Molloy, who died at the Midland Regional Hospital, Portlaoise on January 24th, 2012. Róisín Molloy, the baby’s mother, told the inquiry how she and her husband Mark were “devastated” after unsuccessful attempts to resuscitate their baby.
Dr A, who was working as a registrar in obstetrics and gynaecology at the hospital, is facing allegations of professional misconduct and poor professional performance.
It is alleged Dr A failed to review the cardiotocograph (CTG) adequately and failed to correctly interpret the CTG as being abnormal. It is also alleged that on or around January 24th, 2012, Dr A retrospectively amended a CTG note from satisfactory to unsatisfactory and added the word non-reassuring where the doctor “knew or ought to have known it was inappropriate”.
Dr A is also alleged to have prescribed or directed the commencement of Syntocinon “in circumstances where this was inappropriate” and failed to consult the consultant on call in a timely manner. Dr A, who is representing himself, has rejected the majority of the allegations.
Dr A said he did amend the CTG note to unsatisfactory but that he did not know this was inappropriate or that he should have signed and dated the amendment.
The inquiry heard Ms Molloy was due to be induced on January 24th, 2012, having had difficult pregnancies previously.
She went into labour that morning and attended Portlaoise hospital which she was told “wasn’t that busy” when she arrived before 5am. The inquiry heard that Ms Molloy’s contractions were painful and that despite pushing “the baby wasn’t coming out”.
Dr A was called just before 8am and carried out an examination on Ms Molloy. In his opening remarks, Frank Beatty SC for the Medical Council, said “unbeknown to her [Ms Molloy] Dr A prescribed Syntocinon, something she had been given when delivering her eldest child but it was stopped as it was something she could not tolerate”.
He said Ms Molly received an epidural and for the first time that morning no longer had pain. Ms Molloy was brought into theatre just after 9am and “at this stage there was a level of excitement, she was going to have her c-section”.
Mr Beatty reiterated that at this stage Ms Molloy felt there was no panic and wasn’t informed there were any problems.
Baby Mark was delivered just before 10am and was brought over to the resuscitation table. Ms Molloy heard remarks from a midwife that it “didn’t sound good” while her husband said “we’re not going to get him”. Baby Mark was pronounced dead minutes later.
Ms Molloy told the inquiry Dr A had said he was “sorry for your loss”.
The inquiry continues on Monday, November 27th.