HSE apologizes to parents left ‘heartbroken and unanswered questions’ over 15 years after little girl’s stillbirth

The HSE and University Maternity Hospital Limerick has apologized in the High Court to a woman who gave birth to a stillborn baby 16 years ago.

The apology was read out in the High Court as the mother of Hannah Collins, who was stillborn in Limerick Hospital a few days later Christmas In 2007, a lawsuit against the was settled HSE.

Rebecca Collins with partner Tom and children Annie, Molly, Alice and Nancy outside the High Court in Dublin


Rebecca Collins with partner Tom and children Annie, Molly, Alice and Nancy outside the High Court in DublinPhoto credit: Collins Photo Agency

Outside Court in a statement from their attorney, the Collins family of Carrigaholt, Co Klara said Hannah will always be in their hearts and minds.

Collins family solicitor Liam Reidy SC, hired by HOMS Assist solicitors, told the High Court the case was settled and could be dropped.

He said Hannah’s parents, Rebecca and Tom Collins, are in court with their four young daughters.

In the letter of apology, the hospital and HSE said they would like to “sincerely apologize” to Hannah’s mother, Rebecca Collins, and her family for the events that occurred on December 28, 2007 relating to the stillbirth of their baby girl, Hanna .”

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It added: “The maternity hospital and HSE recognize that the outcome of December 28, 2007 was devastating to your family and had a profound and lasting impact on you.”

The letter, signed by UL Hospitals Group Chief Operations Officer Noreen Spillane, continued, “Your family’s willingness to share their experiences was invaluable as it allowed the hospital to learn from your experiences and make recommendations to improve the systems and processes in place at the hospital related to the delivery of maternity services.”

It concluded by stating that the hospital and HSE are “committed to ensuring that the recommendations identified in the hospital investigation report are implemented as a matter of urgency”.

Rebecca Collins, 40, of Killeanaugh, Carrigaholt, Co. Clare, had sued the HSE over her care at the university maternity home. limerick in 2007.

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Liability was recognized in the case.

An internal investigation was later conducted that focused on the CTG recording, which monitors the baby’s heartbeat before birth.

The proceedings alleged that after the internal examination of the stillbirth, it was determined that a non-sedative CTG trace performed at the maternity ward on December 27, 2007 had not been identified and adequately treated.

It was also claimed that Ms Collins was not made aware of this hospital’s failure to properly identify and appropriately treat a non-reassuring CTG trace of her unborn child until May 2017, when she was finally notified.

When Hannah was stillborn on December 28, 2007, it was discovered that she had a tight knot in her umbilical cord.


Before the four courts, Collins family attorney Rachel O’Shaughnessy read a statement on behalf of Rebecca Collins

It read: “Rebecca and Tom were heartbroken and would live with unanswered questions for the next 15 years. Why and how did it happen; could it have been prevented; Could your daughter have been saved?”

Ms Collins had seen a PrimeTime program in January 2015 related to CTG monitoring which prompted her to contact the hospital.

The statement added: “The trauma came back. Rebecca contacted the hospital and asked for an investigation into what really happened to her daughter Hannah.”

A full system analysis review took two years.

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The statement continued, “In May 2017, Rebecca finally discovered that CTG monitoring had shown signs of stress the day before Hannah’s death.”

She said while the inquest answered many questions, the inquest into Hannah’s case only took place after Ms Collins fought for answers from the HSE.

https://www.thesun.ie/health/10349472/hse-limerick-hospital-apology-stillbirth-rebecca-collins-health/ HSE apologizes to parents left ‘heartbroken and unanswered questions’ over 15 years after little girl’s stillbirth


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