Friday 15 December 2017

Mother of two died after minor operation - inquest told

Daughter of Susan McGee (inset), Melissa Barry, at the Coroner's Court inquest
Daughter of Susan McGee (inset), Melissa Barry, at the Coroner's Court inquest

Gareth Naughton

A woman who had minor elective surgery at a private hospital died less than two weeks later, an inquest has heard.

Susan McGee (52) died at Beaumont Hospital on July 24, 2013, eight days after she was discharged from The Hermitage Medical Clinic following surgery.

The inquest into the death of the mother-of-two was opened at Dublin Coroner's Court, but adjourned following legal submissions.

The court heard that Mrs McGee - from Skerries Road in Rush, north Co Dublin - attended The Hermitage for an elective hernia surgery on July 13, 2013.

Garda Derek Dalton said she was discharged three days later and returned to her home, where she was being looked after by her daughter, Melissa Barry. She was readmitted to The Hermitage at 10pm that night and stayed there.

"She contacted her daughter on July 22 and said she felt extremely unwell. On the same date she underwent surgery. She was then transferred to the intensive care unit in Beaumont Hospital on July 23, 2013," the garda said. She passed away just after midnight on July 24, the court heard.

The inquest was adjourned following submissions from legal representatives for the family, The Hermitage and two consultants due to give evidence.

Barrister for the family Dr Simon Mills told the court there will be a "tension" between what Ms Barry will say in evidence and what is recorded in the nursing notes. He said he also anticipates there would be a tension between the two consultants due to give evidence and the nursing notes.

"The reality is that neither of them saw or assessed Mrs McGee over the weekend during which she became ill and as a result of which deterioration she died," he said.

Representing The Hermitage, Brian Foley BL said there were no depositions from nursing staff and he has not met with them. He submitted that Ms Barry's evidence would appear to be "at odds" with what is in the nursing records and if nursing care is to be "implicated", he should be in a position to deal with that. "I simply cannot represent my client's interests effectively on the hoof," he said.

Coroner Dr Brian Farrell adjourned the inquest.

Irish Independent

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