Northern Ireland

Causeway stillborn Inquest: Mother 'good candidate for a Caesarean section'

Michelle and Barry Rocks at Belfast Coroner's Court where an inquest for their still born daughter Cara is being held, 30 August 2016 Image copyright PA
Image caption Michelle Rocks, pictured with her husband Barry outside Belfast Coroner's Court on Tuesday, was categorised as low risk for a stillbirth

The mother of a baby stillborn at a County Londonderry hospital had been a good candidate for a planned Caesarean section, an inquest has been told.

Cara Rocks was stillborn at the Causeway Hospital, in Coleraine, in June 2013.

Obstetrician Dr Joanna Krystowska said under cross-examination that Michelle Rocks had been "keen" on a C-section.

She agreed that the patient would have been a prime candidate for the surgical procedure.

Dr Krystowska, who had assessed Mrs Rocks at the 32nd week of her pregnancy added that the final say on a mode of delivery should always lie with the patient.

Pros and cons

When pressed on the issue of choice by the coroner, Joe McCrisken, the doctor replied:

"My role is to express all pros and cons regarding both modes of delivery.

"The last decision is for the patient."

Later, Dr Krystowska said everyone involved in the case had been left "traumatised" by Cara's death.

Image caption Baby Cara died at the Causeway Hospital in June 2013.

On Tuesday, the Northern Health and Social Care Trust, which runs the hospital, apologised for Cara's death and admitted a series of failings in the care provided to the baby's mother.

The hearing is the first ever stillbirth inquest in Northern Ireland.

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