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A baby died after a Yorkshire hospital gave his mother an abortion pill without realising she was 30 weeks pregnant, an inquest heard.

The mother, from East Yorkshire, gave birth in a toilet at York Hospital after taking abortion medicine believing she was just 12 weeks into her pregnancy.

An inquest heard she had decided to legally abort the pregnancy on health grounds believing she was 12 weeks gone, when in fact she was more than twice that.

An independent investigation found that staff had ‘too much to do’ due to the high volume of patients at the time, leading to the advanced pregnancy not being identified.

In England, Scotland, and Wales, it is legal to have an abortion before 24 weeks of pregnancy.

Only in very specific circumstances can an abortion take place after this, if the mother’s life is at risk or the child would be born with a severe disability.

The woman went for the treatment at York Hospital on October 26 last year but scans were either not carried out or were done erroneously.

The harrowing evidence was heard during an inquest in Hull on Monday into the baby’s death. No family were present and all the evidence heard was in written form. 

The mother gave birth to the baby in a toilet at York Hospital after taking the drug mifepristone.

Staff realised the baby was alive and immediately began to resuscitate him.

A Yorkshire mum's baby died after she was given an abortion pill at York Hospital (pictured) while 30 weeks pregnant, though she believed she was only 12 weeks pregnant. An inquest heard how scans must have either not been done or done erroneously

A Yorkshire mum's baby died after she was given an abortion pill at York Hospital (pictured) while 30 weeks pregnant, though she believed she was only 12 weeks pregnant. An inquest heard how scans must have either not been done or done erroneously

A Yorkshire mum’s baby died after she was given an abortion pill at York Hospital (pictured) while 30 weeks pregnant, though she believed she was only 12 weeks pregnant. An inquest heard how scans must have either not been done or done erroneously 

Mifepristone (pictured) is given for a medical abortion, the woman takes two medicines, usually 24 to 48 hours apart, to induce an abortion

Mifepristone (pictured) is given for a medical abortion, the woman takes two medicines, usually 24 to 48 hours apart, to induce an abortion

 Mifepristone (pictured) is given for a medical abortion, the woman takes two medicines, usually 24 to 48 hours apart, to induce an abortion

Named Ronnie by his parents, the baby was rushed to the Jessop Wing maternity unit in Sheffield where desperate attempts were made to save him.

He had suffered a number of problems, including multiple organ failure, and was seriously unwell.

Ronnie was placed on a ventilator and received maximum life support care, despite battling for four days, sadly died four days later on October 30.

A serious incident investigation was carried out by independent medical practitioner Jacqui Evans.

She found the ‘volume of patients had severely increased’ which ‘increased the time taken to assess patients’.

‘She said there has been an ‘information overload’ and staff had ‘too much to do’. She also raised concerns about the communication between staff due to the ‘severe internal pressure’.

She concluded that had the patient been referred earlier, it is likely the advanced pregnancy would have been identified, Ms Evans said.

She said the baby would then have been born in a suitable department and in an appropriate manner.

A inquest at Hull's Coroner's Court (pictured) heard how staff tried to save baby Ronnie after realising he was alive

A inquest at Hull's Coroner's Court (pictured) heard how staff tried to save baby Ronnie after realising he was alive

A inquest at Hull’s Coroner’s Court (pictured) heard how staff tried to save baby Ronnie after realising he was alive

While Ronnie was born prematurely, in normal circumstances a baby born at 31 weeks would have a 95 per cent chance of survival.

Senior coroner Professor Paul Marks praised the staff who acted quickly to try and save Ronnie. He said they should be ‘commended for this’.

He said that had the true length of pregnancy been identified correctly and if the baby had been born in an appropriate setting he would probably have survived.

Prof Marks delivered a narrative conclusion into Ronnie’s death.

He said: ‘Ronnie was born alive on October 26, 2021, after a legal termination of pregnancy by the internal use of drug mifepristone.

‘He was deemed as being viable and was resuscitated and then treated at the Jessop Wing in Sheffield. Despite this, his condition deteriorated relentlessly.’

The conclusion confirmed Ronnie died at the Jessop Wing, predominantly due to brain damage.

Source: dailymail

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