Jane McGuinness was given drugs from a rubbish bin at Whipps Cross Hospital in August

Whipps Cross Hospital, Leytonstone.

Whipps Cross Hospital, Leytonstone.

First published in News
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East London and West Essex Guardian Series: Photograph of the Author by , Reporter

Whipps Cross University Hospital has apologised to a mother who was left fighting for her life after an emergency caesarean.

Jane McGuinness, 38, lost two-and-a-half litres of blood during the operation and spent two weeks in intensive care for two weeks.

She was also given drugs retrieved from a bin.

Mrs McGuiness and her husband Scott, who live in Sunset Avenue, Chingford, said they chose Whipps Cross for the birth to support their local NHS, but now they have lost faith in the service.

Mr McGuinness, vice principal of Drapers’ Academy in Romford, said their experience echoes the findings of a Care Quality Commission inspection in January, which found patients were being put at risk due to poor care and hygiene.

“The admission of a number of issues vindicates, to some degree, our complaint, but key issues such as levels of staffing, availability of equipment and staff being able to report issues without reprisal are still concerns,” he said.

“Our aim has always been to ensure no other family is treated the way we were.”

Barts Health NHS Trust, which runs Whipps Cross, apologised for a number of shortcomings, including using drugs from the bin for an epidural, exceeding the recommended delivery time of 75 minutes by almost two hours due to busy maternity theatres, a malfunctioning tocograph, and asking Mr McGuinness to change in a public toilet that had urine on the floor.

Mrs McGuinness lost a large amount of blood during and after her caesarean and lost consciousness when the pair was left alone with baby Caitlin – a period when new mothers, and women who haemorrhaged over 1 litre, should be monitored.

A Barts spokeswoman said: “We are very sorry that we failed in some aspects of Mrs McGuinness’s care.

“We met Mr and Mrs McGuinness recently to apologise and to fully explain the steps that we have taken to address the shortcomings identified following a comprehensive investigation.”

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