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23rd Jan 2015

Hospital investigated after death of two newborns in Galway

All seven cases occurred between February and November, 2013.

Katie Mythen-Lynch

“Apparent deficiencies” in the care of seven babies, two of whom died, at Portiuncula Hospital in Ballinasloe, Co. Galway have sparked a review of the maternity unit there.

An independent expert team, including one patient representative, has been appointed to investigate after it was revealed that five of the babies were deprived of oxygen during delivery.

All seven cases occurred between February and November, 2013.

According to the Portiuncula Hospital Ballinasloe-Saolta University Health Care Group, which oversees the hospital, the review of the care delivered to seven babies who experienced negative perinatal outcomes found that there were “two infant mortalities and a further five babies had evidence of oxygen deprivation [hypoxia] during delivery.”

“Apparent deficiencies in intra-partum care were identified which included interpretation and review of CTG tracings; administration of drugs to accelerate labour; and instrumental delivery.” read a statement.

“In line with the requirement of the HSE “Open Disclosure” policy, the seven families affected are being contacted by the hospital and appointments made where requested for consultations with medical staff and support services.”

The hospital said enhanced monitoring measures have since been introduced, adding: “There have been no negative perinatal outcomes at Portiuncula Hospital Ballinasloe since the enhanced monitoring measures were put in place.”