A heartbroken father has shared his little girl’s final words before she died of sepsis only months after her mother passed away from cancer.
He told an inquest into 2-year-old Marcie’s tragic death “she looked at me and said ‘okay daddy'” before the girl “went limp.”
Marcie was being treated for pneumonia at the Royal United Hospital in Bath when she suffered a cardiac arrest in December 2017.
Her father, James Tadman, said: “As you can all appreciate, my family and I have been through hell and no words can adequately describe how we are feeling.
“We have lost a very beautiful, caring little girl whose smile would light up any room and melt any heart.
“We put our trust in the Royal United Hospital, assuming that our little girl would be getting the very best care but tragically that was not the case.
“The hospital’s own internal investigation has identified a number of failings and these have been described by one expert as ‘systemic’ in nature.
“We can only hope that lessons have been learnt and that every child that receives treatment at the hospital in the future will be better protected.
“The only crumb of comfort I can take from the impossible situation I find myself facing is that Marcie has been reunited with her Mummy, my wife, who sadly lost her fight against cancer in July 2017.”
Three days before little Marcie died, she had been seen by an out-of-hours GP who diagnosed a viral infection. The father was told to give her Calpol.
The day before she passed away, her father brought her to the hospital’s emergency department as she had a high temperature, a cough, and had been vomiting. However, the sepsis screening tool wasn’t completed.
A doctor saw Marcie but not reviewed again for 11 hours. The next day, she was about to be moved to the intensive care unit when she had a cardiac arrest.
“I explained to Marcie that everything was okay and they were going to go to another room,” James expressed.
“She looked at me and said, ‘Okay, Daddy’. When the nurse finished giving the fluids Marcie looked at me, took one big breath and she looked straight into my eyes.
“I had hold of her other hand and was stroking it, telling her she was going to be okay, she just seemed to turn off when she exhaled and went limp.”
Coroner Maria Voisin listed numerous failings by the hospital and recorded a conclusion that the two-year-old died from natural causes contributed to by neglect.
She said: “I consider that putting these basic failures together led to the gross failure to provide or perform any effective medical treatment.
“I find that the gross failure has caused or significantly contributed to Marcie’s death.”
Trust medical director Dr. Bernie Marden said: “We are deeply sorry for the shortfalls in Marcie’s care.
“We failed to appreciate the gravity of her illness and in doing so we let down both Marcie and her family. This should never have happened.
“We owe it to Marcie’s family to demonstrate we learnt from their devastating loss and we are doing everything we can to make sure tragedies like this do not happen again.”
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