baby care

Israel: ‘I prayed that my baby wouldn’t live’

Israel: 'I prayed that my baby wouldn't live'

From dream to nightmare: Anna arrived in the ninth month of her pregnancy with labor in Laniado Hospital last year. During the previous pregnancy, she had to give birth by caesarean section and this time she hoped to have a natural delivery.

Around four o’clock in the afternoon, she was admitted to the delivery room, and according to the tests they carried out in the evening, it was found that everything was normal for her and the fetus.

But around midnight, something changed. It turned out that the medical team had not taken into account crucial information in the medical file.
The monitor placed on the fetus had recorded a slowing of the fetal heart rate, the report indicated that on 3 occasions, an abnormal slowing of the heart, but no one took this into account.

It was not until 1:30 a.m., during further monitoring, that it was recorded that there was no more fetal pulse. The frightened couple did not understand what was happening all those hours when they thought everything was fine, when there had been great fetal pain for hours.

Anna had to have a caesarean, the baby was out. During the operation, doctors also noticed a tear in the mom’s uterus.

The baby that came into the world was cyanotic. It was noted that the hospital staff began to carry out resuscitation operations, and after 2-3 minutes the recovery of the baby’s pulse and color was noted. He was transferred to intensive care and contrary to the parents’ hopes, the baby developed signs of brain damage and multisystem failure that worsened until his death.

“We had terrible times, times we didn’t think could happen, the worst of everything happened, our baby died from a chain of hospital errors,” Anna recalls sadly. “That moment when we realized there was a slim chance he would stay alive, but like a vegetable, it was terrible, we no longer knew what to pray for.”

Anna and her husband realized that the hospital was responsible for this negligence and decided to implicate lawyer Iris Agami Maimon,
“Anna, the mum said to me, ‘Iris, I did the hardest thing a parent could do – pray that my son doesn’t live. That phrase resonates with me to this day,'” said the lawyer Maimon.

“My husband went back to work like a robot after a month and a half so that we had no more worries, it lasted three months, until he realized that he was not succeeding more. he was unable to continue working.”

I have already had two surgeries to repair the uterus, because we always have the desire to have children”, she adds, “it forces us each time to gather more patience, to find more strength to continue moving forward. Another pregnancy won’t bring our son back, won’t cure the terrible pain, but it will allow us to continue to grow the family and it will not destroy the rest of our dreams.”

The couple’s lawyer appealed to the Department of Health to request a commission of inquiry into the incident. The Department of Health committee determined that “this is an unfortunate case of death due to asphyxiation during childbirth resulting from an error in assessing the severity of the fetal heart rate. The committee pointed to a number of additional shortcomings and failures in childbirth management that led to this tragedy.”

“In the committee, I felt like I was seen,” Anna enthused. “With all the grief and infinite sadness, we are happy that these are the conclusions and that we have received recognition. One of the objectives is a change in behavior, to raise awareness, so that such mistakes are not repeated., if it can save a baby or a woman, so much the better.”

One of the bright spots was Dr Arbel who attended to me at the critical moment and saved what‘she could still save me and my womb. She also promised us that she would make changes in the department following what happened and we heard that she did. She was also there for us with great sensitivity.”

Response from lawyer Iris Agami Maimon: “The long and serious chain of failures in the treatment of my client and her son began at the maternity admission stage, ignoring a monitor who ‘screamed at the sky’ there was fetal distress and then, the stage of resuscitation and that of my client. My client has already had 2 surgeries to repair the tear in the uterus and there is great uncertainty about her chances of conceiving again.”

The hospital’s response The hospital treats thousands of births a year, while ensuring the safety of mothers and newborns. Unfortunately, an unusual set of circumstances led to the tragic aftermath of the case. We share the deep pain of the parents, deep questioning took place with the participation of all the staff concerned in the service, the lessons were learned and applied immediately. In addition, the hospital staff fully cooperated with the inspection committee. The hospital received the committee’s report about a month ago, is reviewing it and taking it seriously.”

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