Baby dies after complications during birth at Southend Hospital

Simon and Mary-Jayne Harrison with their first daughter Rebecca

Baby Jessica who died after eight hours

First published in Local News

THE DISTRAUGHT parents of a baby girl who died eight hours after birth are seeking answers from Southend Hospital.

Simon and Mary-Jayne Harrison were looking forward to meeting their daughter Jessica - a little sister to Rebecca, now 20 months.

However complications during labour meant Jessica was born not breathing and had inhaled meconium - a baby’s first stool passed when in distress in the womb. She also had a second infection from the placenta.

Jessica had to be revived but died eight hours later.

Mr and Mrs Harrison’s grief has turned to angry as they feel warning signs of their baby being in distress weren’t taken seriously by staff and they waited so long for an emergency caesarean section Jessica instead arrived by forceps delivery.

Mrs Harrison, 28, said: “The cord was around her neck and she had inhaled meconium so it was pouring from her nose and mouth.

“If the caesarean section had been done at 3am when we signed the papers or earlier if they’d listened to our concerns about the warning bleeps on the monitor my daughter would have stood more of a chance to fight the infections.”

Mr Harrison, 29, a teacher at St Thomas More School, said: “The monitor was flashing up concerns but we were told there might be something wrong with the machine and they reset it.

“They should’ve taken it more seriously. Though the waters broke at 8pm and there was no sign of meconium, the monitors and also Mary-Jayne’s high temperature were indications of a problem.”

Mrs Harrison was told her fever was a side effect of the epidural but she had no problem with her first child.

Her husband added: “There must be a point where they have to take all these problems seriously.”

An emergency caesarean was decided at 3am but another woman considered more urgent was admitted to theatre first.

The parents, from Leigh, were told a second theatre could be opened if there was no more progress in an hour but nothing happened until 6am when Mrs Harrison needed to push.

Staff worked for half an hour to get Jessica breathing and she was rushed to the special care baby unit but they were warned she may be brain dead or severely brain damaged.

Her parents made the heartbreaking decision to turn off Jessica’s life support machine at 3.15pm on September 30 last year. She weighed a healthy 7lbs 12oz.

Mr Harrison said: “We were distraught. Jessica should’ve survived if things were taken seriously and they had acted sooner.”

Mrs Harrison said: “It was so unexpected. She was a healthy baby.

“This Christmas was horrible but we had to make it special for Rebecca.

“I went to a cold grave to see my baby girl when it should’ve been her first Christmas.

”I feel so sad for Rebecca to never know her sister. It’s so wrong.”

Sue Hardy director of nursing at Southend Hospital said: ““We fully understand the distress the loss of a baby brings and once again offer our sincerest condolences to Mr and Mrs Harrison in their grief following the death of baby Jessica.

"The family have met with our clinical teams and our head of midwifery and we will continue to support and advise them during this very difficult pre-inquest period.”

Comments (19)

Please log in to enable comment sorting

2:22pm Wed 9 Jan 13

pam35baby says...

what a sad story but from experience in looseing my baby boy nothing has changed and no lessons have been learnt breaks my heart that another baby has been lost due to southend hospital's neglect southend will never say sorry because if they accept liability they can be sued that's what we was told when we went to solicitor but all we wanted was a sorry which we never got.
what a sad story but from experience in looseing my baby boy nothing has changed and no lessons have been learnt breaks my heart that another baby has been lost due to southend hospital's neglect southend will never say sorry because if they accept liability they can be sued that's what we was told when we went to solicitor but all we wanted was a sorry which we never got. pam35baby
  • Score: 2

5:46pm Wed 9 Jan 13

TherealIndiana says...

The consultants need sacking there! The midwives were totally stretched when my wife was there with our first and the consultants totally ignored any of our and their concerns. Fortunately our baby survived but my wife technically died from incompetency but was fortunately saved in theatre. All the hospital offered was counselling and no apology for the consultants actions merely stating that these things happen. The consultant in question still works there to this day!
The consultants need sacking there! The midwives were totally stretched when my wife was there with our first and the consultants totally ignored any of our and their concerns. Fortunately our baby survived but my wife technically died from incompetency but was fortunately saved in theatre. All the hospital offered was counselling and no apology for the consultants actions merely stating that these things happen. The consultant in question still works there to this day! TherealIndiana
  • Score: 0

6:33pm Wed 9 Jan 13

pam35baby says...

totally agree Indiana, the dr that told me to go away at 6 weeks and stop being over paronoid walked into the room when my son was in heart failure and is still working there to this day but my son died and I cant have my son back glad to hear your wife is recovering hun and your baby is fine :)
totally agree Indiana, the dr that told me to go away at 6 weeks and stop being over paronoid walked into the room when my son was in heart failure and is still working there to this day but my son died and I cant have my son back glad to hear your wife is recovering hun and your baby is fine :) pam35baby
  • Score: 0

6:43pm Wed 9 Jan 13

jolllyboy says...

Sad and evryone feels for this couple. But at the end of the day it should not have happened, and that is what makes it so hard.
Sad and evryone feels for this couple. But at the end of the day it should not have happened, and that is what makes it so hard. jolllyboy
  • Score: 0

7:54pm Wed 9 Jan 13

sillysausage says...

This is terrible and I feel deeply for the family involved. I understand that grief more Often than not turns to anger and their has to be someone to point that anger at. However I hope you all understand how unpredictable labour and birth can be. Sometimes there is no one to point the finger at yet people such as the midwives in this case always seem to end up in the firing line. sometimes things just happen and as difficult as it is I think we all need to realise this!
This is terrible and I feel deeply for the family involved. I understand that grief more Often than not turns to anger and their has to be someone to point that anger at. However I hope you all understand how unpredictable labour and birth can be. Sometimes there is no one to point the finger at yet people such as the midwives in this case always seem to end up in the firing line. sometimes things just happen and as difficult as it is I think we all need to realise this! sillysausage
  • Score: 0

8:49pm Wed 9 Jan 13

cgb says...

Stop making sweeping judgements without knowing all the facts people!
An apology is not any admission of guilt/failure etc. The hospital does not have to admit liability for you to sue them. Normally an independant expert would advise if you had a case.
if a solicitor advised that you couldn't sue then you didn't have a case!
Stop making sweeping judgements without knowing all the facts people! An apology is not any admission of guilt/failure etc. The hospital does not have to admit liability for you to sue them. Normally an independant expert would advise if you had a case. if a solicitor advised that you couldn't sue then you didn't have a case! cgb
  • Score: 0

8:59pm Wed 9 Jan 13

TherealIndiana says...

cgb wrote:
Stop making sweeping judgements without knowing all the facts people!
An apology is not any admission of guilt/failure etc. The hospital does not have to admit liability for you to sue them. Normally an independant expert would advise if you had a case.
if a solicitor advised that you couldn't sue then you didn't have a case!
Disagree with that sorry, most lawyers won't take it on due to the complexity of the case I.e. getting specialist medical people and going up against the NHS who will tie you in knots and protract the case so much it bankrupts you! Therefore no profit for the lawyers!
[quote][p][bold]cgb[/bold] wrote: Stop making sweeping judgements without knowing all the facts people! An apology is not any admission of guilt/failure etc. The hospital does not have to admit liability for you to sue them. Normally an independant expert would advise if you had a case. if a solicitor advised that you couldn't sue then you didn't have a case![/p][/quote]Disagree with that sorry, most lawyers won't take it on due to the complexity of the case I.e. getting specialist medical people and going up against the NHS who will tie you in knots and protract the case so much it bankrupts you! Therefore no profit for the lawyers! TherealIndiana
  • Score: 0

8:32am Thu 10 Jan 13

pam35baby says...

yes totally agree Indiana that is the reason they wouldn't take our case on because it was to complex and no dr will go against another they lock up, but like I say we didn't want to sue just wanted an apology but never got one egb you don't have a clue what you talking about are you a solicitor or someone that has lost a child if not you don't have a clue so don't tell me I don't know facts as been through it was just saying how I felt for this couple as southend don't seem to want to say sorry for anything or get any better
yes totally agree Indiana that is the reason they wouldn't take our case on because it was to complex and no dr will go against another they lock up, but like I say we didn't want to sue just wanted an apology but never got one egb you don't have a clue what you talking about are you a solicitor or someone that has lost a child if not you don't have a clue so don't tell me I don't know facts as been through it was just saying how I felt for this couple as southend don't seem to want to say sorry for anything or get any better pam35baby
  • Score: 0

9:22am Thu 10 Jan 13

TherealIndiana says...

When we sat down with the hospital 6 weeks after my child's birth to find out what went so drastically wrong, there were three of them, head of midwifery, complaints manager; a solicitor everything said to us was scripted and rehearse. We just wanted them too say sorry we are not the sueing type and just wanted a frank explaination. But noooo just bum covering, walked away disgusted!
When we sat down with the hospital 6 weeks after my child's birth to find out what went so drastically wrong, there were three of them, head of midwifery, complaints manager; a solicitor everything said to us was scripted and rehearse. We just wanted them too say sorry we are not the sueing type and just wanted a frank explaination. But noooo just bum covering, walked away disgusted! TherealIndiana
  • Score: 0

11:41am Thu 10 Jan 13

Antonius says...

Unfortunately these things happen. A good friend of mine lost his wife and baby in childbirth. Thank goodness these tragedies are rare.
Unfortunately these things happen. A good friend of mine lost his wife and baby in childbirth. Thank goodness these tragedies are rare. Antonius
  • Score: 0

12:23pm Thu 10 Jan 13

runwellian says...

At one time you went to hospital when you were unwell and felt safe and secure once admitted, now hospitals are a place to fear!

Just look at the recent report on doctors with criminal convictions still being allowed to practice and then we have fat lazy consultants who trained hard to reach the top only to sit on their fat backsides and leave 'juniors' to do the work!

I have had two instances of serious mistakes over medication from this hospital, food served on cardboard plates, staff who don't know how to use vital equipment correctly ...

There are far too many senior mangers who could manage putting a letter in an envelope correctly let alone caring for the sick.
At one time you went to hospital when you were unwell and felt safe and secure once admitted, now hospitals are a place to fear! Just look at the recent report on doctors with criminal convictions still being allowed to practice and then we have fat lazy consultants who trained hard to reach the top only to sit on their fat backsides and leave 'juniors' to do the work! I have had two instances of serious mistakes over medication from this hospital, food served on cardboard plates, staff who don't know how to use vital equipment correctly ... There are far too many senior mangers who could manage putting a letter in an envelope correctly let alone caring for the sick. runwellian
  • Score: 0

5:31pm Thu 10 Jan 13

pam35baby says...

totally agree its disgusting how they just get away with it and feel like they don't have the need to apologise we had the same sort of meeting I even took a picture of my son to show them he was a human being not just a number on their bit of paper but still they couldn't apologise beat around the bush and even though my sons stat chat paper work had a line through it with no results as they couldn't be bothered to chart any of his stats as they didn't do any which is something that should happen when a child comes in.
totally agree its disgusting how they just get away with it and feel like they don't have the need to apologise we had the same sort of meeting I even took a picture of my son to show them he was a human being not just a number on their bit of paper but still they couldn't apologise beat around the bush and even though my sons stat chat paper work had a line through it with no results as they couldn't be bothered to chart any of his stats as they didn't do any which is something that should happen when a child comes in. pam35baby
  • Score: 0

5:51pm Thu 10 Jan 13

whataday says...

I don't know when these autocrats in the NHS will learn. Their own research shows most people who make complaints initially just want an apology but when this isn't forthcoming it turns into litigation.
There are solicitors who specialise in these type of cases but be warned the NHS deliberately drag the whole thing out over a period of many years. You have to be extremely strong to be able to continue your fight to get an admission of liability from them and will get your apology at the last minute when they decide to settle out of court a few days before the hearing is due.
I don't know when these autocrats in the NHS will learn. Their own research shows most people who make complaints initially just want an apology but when this isn't forthcoming it turns into litigation. There are solicitors who specialise in these type of cases but be warned the NHS deliberately drag the whole thing out over a period of many years. You have to be extremely strong to be able to continue your fight to get an admission of liability from them and will get your apology at the last minute when they decide to settle out of court a few days before the hearing is due. whataday
  • Score: 0

5:59pm Thu 10 Jan 13

TherealIndiana says...

And still no one gets sacked, just the standard phrase 'lessons have been learned and procedures put in place'. But the same muppets are running the circus.........
And still no one gets sacked, just the standard phrase 'lessons have been learned and procedures put in place'. But the same muppets are running the circus......... TherealIndiana
  • Score: 0

8:13pm Thu 10 Jan 13

cgb says...

Yes Indiana I do have expertise which makes me qualified to comment.
Some doctors solely do work as independant experts and an initial report can cost as little as £200- hardly the thousands you are on about. Any solicitor will take on a case that has merit as costs are ALWAYS covered in the awards if sueing.
Quite clearly those moaning do not realise what a good hospital you have on your doorstep- go and read the NHSLA reports/ CQC reports and Dr Foster reports then you may actually have some knowledge of what you are talking about.
Yes Indiana I do have expertise which makes me qualified to comment. Some doctors solely do work as independant experts and an initial report can cost as little as £200- hardly the thousands you are on about. Any solicitor will take on a case that has merit as costs are ALWAYS covered in the awards if sueing. Quite clearly those moaning do not realise what a good hospital you have on your doorstep- go and read the NHSLA reports/ CQC reports and Dr Foster reports then you may actually have some knowledge of what you are talking about. cgb
  • Score: 0

11:32am Sat 12 Jan 13

Almeda11 says...

cgb wrote:
Yes Indiana I do have expertise which makes me qualified to comment. Some doctors solely do work as independant experts and an initial report can cost as little as £200- hardly the thousands you are on about. Any solicitor will take on a case that has merit as costs are ALWAYS covered in the awards if sueing. Quite clearly those moaning do not realise what a good hospital you have on your doorstep- go and read the NHSLA reports/ CQC reports and Dr Foster reports then you may actually have some knowledge of what you are talking about.
So what exactly are your qualifications then? Most of the people on here have stories to tell, maybe you haven`t -- yet ! and l hope to god you never do.
But how anyone can defend some of the things that have happened over the years in our nhs is beyond me, particularly Stafford hospital, where food was routinely put out of patients reach. WHY? it does not take ANY extra effort to put the tray a few inches closer, and anyone who does this clearly has a sadistic turn of mind. And WHY don`t the sisters on these wards act like the person in charge that they are supposed to be and clamp down hard on nurses or health assistants who do this?
Or are they too busy being " best buddies" with their colleages!!

l spend some time in Germany, and this type of thing would simply not be tolerated. lF it happened, there would be one warning and if it happened again they would be out.

Then, there have been cases in both Southend and Basildon Hospitals, where staff did not know how to use a breathing tube, or it was broken/switched off,unbelievable, or maybe not!! l read this in the Echo a while ago. Patients in Stafford hospital, and others, left lying in their own urine and faeces, or so dehydrated that they were drinking water from flower vases!
Not to mention arrogant doctors who didn`t listen to patients` concerns about their own children, one mother had FOUR visits from different doctors NONE of whom listened, they ALL thought she was over reacting, typical, and THEIR CHILD DIED AS A RESULT OF THESE DOCTORS` ARROGANCE AND INCOMPETENCE.

DO NOT, EVER, DEFEND THE INDEFENSIBLE.

Even a recent report said that, too many times, when a patient wants to make a complaint then that is the end of the conversation, when it SHOULD be the beginning!
And this is the country that goes fighting in other people wars for democracy, and look at the disgusting things that have been happening in our hospitals, in THIS COUNTRY. A DISGACEFUL AND DISHONEST ATTITUDE..
[quote][p][bold]cgb[/bold] wrote: Yes Indiana I do have expertise which makes me qualified to comment. Some doctors solely do work as independant experts and an initial report can cost as little as £200- hardly the thousands you are on about. Any solicitor will take on a case that has merit as costs are ALWAYS covered in the awards if sueing. Quite clearly those moaning do not realise what a good hospital you have on your doorstep- go and read the NHSLA reports/ CQC reports and Dr Foster reports then you may actually have some knowledge of what you are talking about.[/p][/quote]So what exactly are your qualifications then? Most of the people on here have stories to tell, maybe you haven`t -- yet ! and l hope to god you never do. But how anyone can defend some of the things that have happened over the years in our nhs is beyond me, particularly Stafford hospital, where food was routinely put out of patients reach. WHY? it does not take ANY extra effort to put the tray a few inches closer, and anyone who does this clearly has a sadistic turn of mind. And WHY don`t the sisters on these wards act like the person in charge that they are supposed to be and clamp down hard on nurses or health assistants who do this? Or are they too busy being " best buddies" with their colleages!! l spend some time in Germany, and this type of thing would simply not be tolerated. lF it happened, there would be one warning and if it happened again they would be out. Then, there have been cases in both Southend and Basildon Hospitals, where staff did not know how to use a breathing tube, or it was broken/switched off,unbelievable, or maybe not!! l read this in the Echo a while ago. Patients in Stafford hospital, and others, left lying in their own urine and faeces, or so dehydrated that they were drinking water from flower vases! Not to mention arrogant doctors who didn`t listen to patients` concerns about their own children, one mother had FOUR visits from different doctors NONE of whom listened, they ALL thought she was over reacting, typical, and THEIR CHILD DIED AS A RESULT OF THESE DOCTORS` ARROGANCE AND INCOMPETENCE. DO NOT, EVER, DEFEND THE INDEFENSIBLE. Even a recent report said that, too many times, when a patient wants to make a complaint then that is the end of the conversation, when it SHOULD be the beginning! And this is the country that goes fighting in other people wars for democracy, and look at the disgusting things that have been happening in our hospitals, in THIS COUNTRY. A DISGACEFUL AND DISHONEST ATTITUDE.. Almeda11
  • Score: 0

1:23pm Sat 12 Jan 13

pam35baby says...

totally agree with all of what you have said I and im sure many others sadly have tragic stories about our local hospital but they seem to just get away with what they want when they want and we have to wipe up there mess and our familys have to live with this too.
totally agree with all of what you have said I and im sure many others sadly have tragic stories about our local hospital but they seem to just get away with what they want when they want and we have to wipe up there mess and our familys have to live with this too. pam35baby
  • Score: 0

1:38pm Sat 12 Jan 13

Almeda11 says...

pam35baby wrote:
totally agree with all of what you have said I and im sure many others sadly have tragic stories about our local hospital but they seem to just get away with what they want when they want and we have to wipe up there mess and our familys have to live with this too.
Thanks for your message, l think we should all revolt against this, demonstrations in the streets ect, peaceful ones though. That would draw national and international attention to the nhs, and could, hopefully be the beginning of a change of culture, because that`s what it is a cultural issue.
l, personally intend to move to Germany permanently, as l don`t believe this country " learns lessons" very well, if at all, history will just repeat itself.
[quote][p][bold]pam35baby[/bold] wrote: totally agree with all of what you have said I and im sure many others sadly have tragic stories about our local hospital but they seem to just get away with what they want when they want and we have to wipe up there mess and our familys have to live with this too.[/p][/quote]Thanks for your message, l think we should all revolt against this, demonstrations in the streets ect, peaceful ones though. That would draw national and international attention to the nhs, and could, hopefully be the beginning of a change of culture, because that`s what it is a cultural issue. l, personally intend to move to Germany permanently, as l don`t believe this country " learns lessons" very well, if at all, history will just repeat itself. Almeda11
  • Score: 0

8:27pm Sat 12 Jan 13

TherealIndiana says...

cgb wrote:
Yes Indiana I do have expertise which makes me qualified to comment.
Some doctors solely do work as independant experts and an initial report can cost as little as £200- hardly the thousands you are on about. Any solicitor will take on a case that has merit as costs are ALWAYS covered in the awards if sueing.
Quite clearly those moaning do not realise what a good hospital you have on your doorstep- go and read the NHSLA reports/ CQC reports and Dr Foster reports then you may actually have some knowledge of what you are talking about.
If you are qualified enough to comment on the subject then you should clearly be able to read and understand the comments! For it was not I that challenged your knowledge...Q.E.D...
..
[quote][p][bold]cgb[/bold] wrote: Yes Indiana I do have expertise which makes me qualified to comment. Some doctors solely do work as independant experts and an initial report can cost as little as £200- hardly the thousands you are on about. Any solicitor will take on a case that has merit as costs are ALWAYS covered in the awards if sueing. Quite clearly those moaning do not realise what a good hospital you have on your doorstep- go and read the NHSLA reports/ CQC reports and Dr Foster reports then you may actually have some knowledge of what you are talking about.[/p][/quote]If you are qualified enough to comment on the subject then you should clearly be able to read and understand the comments! For it was not I that challenged your knowledge...Q.E.D... .. TherealIndiana
  • Score: 0

Comments are closed on this article.

Send us your news, pictures and videos

Most read stories

Local Info

Enter your postcode, town or place name

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree