Coroner urges hospital changes after baby death

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A Tasmanian Coroner says the parents of a newborn baby tried for nine hours to alert a hospital to their infant's breathing problems.

... the one-day-old baby may have had a better chance of survival if a paediatrician had seen the child.

... the Hobart Private Hospital is not to blame for the death but has recommended it improve protocols for the observation of babies after birth.

Luc na Champassak showed signs of respiratory problems shortly after his birth three years ago.

His parents noticed he was breathing in an unusual, rasping way and repeatedly asked for him to examined by a paediatrician.

This did not happen before his death almost nine hours later ...

How is the hospital not to blame? The parents alerted the staff to signs of problems and the staff did not contact a paediatrician in a timely manner. Had this been a midwife at a birth centre or in a homebirth who had not alerted a paediatrician that a baby was in respiratory distress, she most likely would be facing deregistration. Double standards?

Melissa Maimann, Essential Birth Consulting 0400 418 448