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Newborn died after hospital told mum she'd wet herself when 'waters broke' and sent her home

A newborn baby died from an infection after a mum who said her waters had broken was sent home from hospital and told she had wet herself.

Rebecca Walker's baby Charlie-Jay. Photo: SWNS

Rebecca Walker, from Rugeley, was 26 weeks into her pregnancy with baby Charlie-Jay when she began to lose water on June 12, 2019.

She attended Royal Stoke University Hospital where she was scanned and advised the fluid loss was likely to her wetting herself.

Despite her concerns, the 46-year-old was discharged and told to come back for a repeat scan two weeks later.

She was also reassured that right-sided pain she was complaining about was due to her baby leaning on a nerve.

But one week later, Rebecca was taken by ambulance to another hospital after suffering further pain in her right side.

Rebecca Walker. Photo: SWNS

An examination confirmed her waters had broken one week ago and there were also worrying signs of an infection.

Rebecca began experiencing contractions later that day and was transferred to another hospital where Charlie-Jay was born by emergency caesarean section.

The tot was admitted to the neonatal unit with suspected sepsis – where the body attacks itself in response to an infection - as well as respiratory issues.

He tragically died the following day on June 21, 2019.

Following the death of Charlie-Jay, who was Rebecca’s first child with partner David Brindley, 35, she instructed medical negligence lawyers to investigate their care.

Lawyers have now secured an undisclosed settlement for Rebecca from the University Hospitals of North Midlands NHS Trust, which runs Stoke Hospital.

Rebecca Walker's partner David Brindley and baby Charlie-Jay. Photo: SWNS

Rebecca has told how she continues to be affected by the loss of her baby more than four years on and is urging medics to listen to the concerns of mums-to-be.

Mum-of-three Rebecca, said: “The news that Charlie-Jay wasn’t going to make it came as a complete shock to me and I remember begging the doctors to help him.

“He passed away in my arms. This was the first and last time I was able to hold him.

“Dave and I stayed in the hospital for around 24 hours afterwards but I found it difficult to even look at Charlie-Jay.

"We were both absolutely devastated and having to tell my children that their baby brother had died was unbearable.

“My mental health has been hugely impacted by losing Charlie-Jay and for a long time I felt so much guilt that I couldn’t save him. I really wish I had pushed for more to be done when I first went to the hospital as I didn’t feel like I had wet myself but I trusted the professionals.

“More than four years on, I’m still deeply affected. I spend a lot of time at home as I feel safe there and I find it tough seeing other people with their babies.

"I have had amazing support, however, from family and friends, Facebook support groups and SANDS charity.

“Nothing will ever make up for the pain we continue to feel, but I hope that by speaking out I can urge medics to listen to the concerns of mums-to-be.

"We know our bodies and when something’s wrong, so please don’t be afraid to ask questions or for a second opinion.

“It’s also vital that people who have experienced baby loss know they’re not alone and there’s support out there.”

Charlie-Jay only lived for a day. Photo: SWNS

Through NHS Resolution, the Trust admitted that had tests been performed during Rebecca’s initial hospital visit and a “rupture of membranes” diagnosed, treatment would have been given.

It also offered its “sincere condolences” to Rebecca and her family but denied liability for Charlie-Jay’s death.

Kayleigh Hunter, one of the specialist medical negligence lawyers at Irwin Mitchell representing Rebecca, said: “This is a truly tragic case in which a couple have been left devastated by the sudden and tragic loss of their baby.

“Rebecca and David also understandably had a number of questions and concerns over the care they received prior to Charlie-Jay being born and whether more could have been done to save their son.

“It’s our view that if an examination during Rebecca’s visit to Royal Stoke Hospital had been performed it would have shown evidence that her waters had broken and Rebecca would have received appropriate treatment to reduce the risk of infection and improve Charlie-Jay’s outcome in the event of pre-term delivery.

“While nothing can ever make up for the pain and grief they’ve suffered, we hope the settlement will go some way to providing the family with a degree of closure and help them to move forward with their lives as best they can.”

Rebecca Walker's baby memorial to Charlie-Jay. Photo: SWNS

Helen Ashley, deputy chief executive at University Hospitals of North Midlands NHS Trust, said: “We would like to offer our sincere condolences to Mrs Walker and her family for the death of Charlie-Jay and have every sympathy for the difficulties that she is experiencing as a result.”

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