Nottingham Coroner rules “missed opportunities” after baby died following misdiagnosis
National law firm Freeths, representing the parents of eight-month-old baby Indie Winnie Moloney at an inquest at Nottingham Coroner’s Court following her death in July 2021, says there are lessons to be learned after a failure to identify the correct cause of her symptoms.
Over two days, the inquest into the death of an eight-month-old baby heard evidence from the family and the clinicians involved in the baby’s care. Gordon Clow, assistant coroner for Nottingham City and Nottinghamshire, concluded there “was a missed opportunity to save Indie”.
Indie’s parents took her to Queen’s Medical Centre (QMC) in Nottingham after she woke unwell one morning. This was followed up by a NEMS out of hours GP surgery doctor following deterioration.
She was diagnosed with gastroenteritis by both medical practitioners, despite a worsening condition and numerous red flags which suggested intussusception, a medical emergency which causes blockages in the intestine and cuts off the blood supply to the part of the intestine which is affected. Intussusception is extremely common in babies and can be easily treatable using an air enema or, occasionally, surgery.
Two days later, Indie’s condition suddenly deteriorated further, and she sadly passed away shortly after. Following her death, a post-mortem confirmed intussusception as the cause of death.
The family believe that had the condition been diagnosed earlier, it would have been treated and her death could have been entirely avoided.
Commenting after the ruling the family’s solicitor, Gemma Bedford, Clinical Negligence Managing Associate at Freeths, said: “The family have, of course, been left devastated by the loss of their beloved daughter, especially in such tragic circumstances. The coroner has confirmed today that there was a failure to refer Indie to hospital and that this may have contributed to her untimely death, but the family have many questions which they still feel need to be answered. We can only hope that the lessons which have been learned throughout this inquest process will help the family in some small way to process their grief, but also ensure that such tragic events do not happen again.”
Indie’s parents, Sally Checkley and Kyle Moloney, added: “Aside from losing Indie, going to the inquest was one of the hardest things we’ve ever had to do. If it wasn’t for Gemma and the team at Freeths making it so easy, we don’t think we could have done it. She’s been by our side every step of the way with support, guidance, and most of all, a listening ear. We just hope that if anyone else has to go through something similar, they get the same support that we’ve had.”
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