Portlaoise Hospital apologises to family over death of baby

A couple who lost their baby son when he died at Midlands Regional Hospital nine years ago, have received an apology from the hospital at the High Court recently. The hospital wished to express its sincere apologies for the failings which caused Dylan Frank’s death, accepting responsibility and stating that ‘it should not have happened.’

Dylan died in the operating theatre shortly after his birth on 6th March 2007. The apology was read out at the conclusion of the settlement of their action against the HSE over the death of their son.

Senior Counsel informed the court that opportunities to deliver the baby were missed on several occasions, stating that Dylan should have been delivered earlier. Dylan’s mother was caused huge distress as she thought that the cause of her son’s death was due to her smoking.

It was only following the broadcast of the RTE Prime Time programme that Dylan’s parents began to ask questions regarding the conduct of staff at Portlaoise hospital and subsequently sought legal advice before they commenced legal proceedings in February 2014.

The pregnancy was allowed to carry until after term even though there was clear evidence that Dylan was small. It was also claimed that there was a failure to recognise foetal distress and furthermore a failure to disclose and provide a full account of what happened to Dylan’s parents.

It was also claimed that Mrs Frank’s had been negligently allowed to feel that the reason for her baby’s death was placental insufficiency caused because of her smoking during pregnancy.

The hospital admitted liability in this case and a settlement was approved by Mr Justice Kevin Cross who sympathised with the loss suffered by the Frank family at the loss of Dylan. He also expressed his hope that the settlement would allow them to obtain some form of closure.


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