Hospital trust apologises after mother was told her baby had died before she was brought to her alive – then died hours later

  • Alisha Pegg was sent home from hospital despite being in premature labour
  • When she gave birth to baby Grace at home they were rushed back to hospital
  • Incorrectly told her baby was dead by medics at William Harvey Hospital
  • Baby Grace was then brought to her alive, but passed away hours later 
  • Devastated mother said errors meant she ‘had to grieve my daughter twice’  

NHS medics told a mother her baby was dead, then alive, before the child died hours later. 

Alisha Pegg said that she was sent home from the William Harvey Hospital in Ashford despite being in premature labour.

When she then gave birth to baby Grace at home, the pair were rushed back to hospital where she was told she had died. 

Grace was then brought to her alive, but died hours later.  

Alisha Pegg was told her baby was dead, then alive, before the child died hours later

Alison with Grace

Alisha Pegg (left) was told her baby Grace (right) was dead, then alive, before the child died hours later

Ms Pegg said she went to the hospital after suffering pain and nausea on February 27, just 22 weeks into her pregnancy.

‘I was doubled over in pain and being sick, and when I phoned the doctor’s they assumed I had a bladder infection,’ she said. 

‘I went in anyway, as I couldn’t feel Grace move. When a midwife asked what the pain felt like, the first word out of my mouth was labour.

‘Having given birth before, I knew what it felt like and my waters were leaking.’

Despite the mother’s protestations, she said she was given a ‘quick’ check over and sent home.

‘They did no dilation check, and no check to see if my waters were gone – the doctor did a bedside scan that lasted about a minute,’ she explained.

‘I was told they could find a heartbeat but no movement, so they said she must have been asleep.

‘I wasn’t happy and I was telling them my body felt like it needed to push, but I was told to go home.’

Ms Pegg said failings by medics at William Harvey Hospital in Ashford meant she was left 'grieving twice'

Ms Pegg said failings by medics at William Harvey Hospital in Ashford meant she was left ‘grieving twice’ 

Mere hours after first going to the hospital, Ms Pegg was picked up by her mother and brought home – only to then call an ambulance when she went into full-blown labour.

‘At around 1.20am the pain got worse, I was being sick, sweating, the room was spinning. around 2.30am I realised something was seriously wrong, 2.40am I dialled 999 and 2.45am I had given birth at home, alone,’ she said.

‘I can’t fault the paramedics, they were amazing. They did all they could do.’

When the pair arrived back at the hospital, they were separated with Grace being taken to the neonatal emergency unit.

Around an hour later, Ms Pegg was told that her baby had died. Shockingly, Grace was then brought to her, alive.

‘I was told that Grace didn’t make it, only for them to bring her up to me 45 minutes later, alive,’ she said.

‘But they said they could not offer any medical intervention, and she died at 6.30am.

‘I had to grieve my daughter twice.’

Rebecca Martin, chief medical officer at the trust, said: ‘We are truly sorry that we didn’t provide the standard of care and support needed.

‘We have changed our practices and policies following Grace’s sad death, including introducing further monitoring for those at risk of preterm labour.

‘We will continue to ensure we provide ongoing support to answer all the family’s questions.’

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