Baby at centre of Wirral child protection concerns A BABY who suffered sickening injuries was today at the centre of serious concerns over child protection. Baby
A, who cannot be named for legal reasons, was three weeks old when he was admitted to hospital on August 9, 2008 with a brain injury, up to 17 fractures to his ribs and upper limb and shoulder fractures.He survived but is likely to suffer permanent brain damage.
A Serious Case Review by Wirral’s Local Safeguarding Children Board (LSCB) revealed the day before Baby
A was admitted to hospital health workers at Wallasey Walk-in Centre and a GP raised no child protection concerns, despite there being dried blood on the child’s vest, blood in his mucus and a bleed into the white of his left eye.
The report explains a haemorrhage in the eye of a Baby
“...should alert specialist health professionals to the possibility of non-accidental injury.
“Extensive or large haemorrhages are more likely to be due to abuse and expert opinion should be sought.
“The haemorrhage in this Baby
was very small. No other physical signs were noted but there was altered blood on the Baby
“These signs should have resulted in the GP either suspecting or considering non-accidental injury, and a second opinion should have been sought.”
The report also revealed how Arrowe Park Hospital’s Midwifery Service failed to provide the family’s correct address which resulted in the health visitor’s involvement being delayed by almost a week.
Merseyside Police was also criticised for carrying out an interview with an unnamed minor without a social worker present, which could have affected evidence gathering.
Medical director for NHS Wirral Dr Shanila Roohi said: “Safeguarding children and vulnerable people is of the highest priority for the NHS, and we continually look at ways to improve prevention and detection of any untoward events that could happen in Wirral.
“We acknowledge the issues highlighted in the Serious Case Review in relation to the Walk-in Centre in Wallasey, and other aspects of our services.
“There were a number of recommendations for the NHS in the report – we have responded swiftly, and every one of these recommendations has been implemented.
“This is an extremely sad case and these events have caused concern to everyone involved.”
Sandra Shannon, associate director of operations for women and children’s services at Wirral University Teaching Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, said: “We have already taken action to address the recommendation that relates to our organisation.
“We have introduced a new communications checklist that ensures our midwives confirm the correct address details with all new mums prior to their discharge from hospital.”
A Merseyside Police spokesman said: “We have fully supported the Serious Case Review carried out by the LSCB and acknowledge its findings. The Force has also reviewed its own internal procedures.
“During the review minor administrative issues have been identified and subsequently addressed. However none of these focused on the quality or integrity of the investigation.”Child A’s dad Dean Hodkinson, 21, from Wallasey, was charged with grievous bodily harm with intent and inflicting grievous bodily harm.
The jury trying the former soldier in May was discharged after they failed to reach a verdict and he faces a re-trial. THE ECHO