Thursday 14 December 2017

'I knew in doctor's surgery that my Vicki was seriously ill'

Vicki Core
Vicki Core
Pictured outside the Medical Council yesterday was the late Vicki Core's parents Thomas and Maureen (centre) with from far left, her brother Garreth, brother Thomas Jnr, Michelle Core who is Garreth's wife , Vicki's sister Kayleigh and brother Ian Core.

Thomas Core knew in his heart and soul that beloved daughter Vicki was very ill.

To bring her to the doctor's surgery he had to carry his 20 year-old girl to the car.

And when they arrived at the clinic he had to carry the statuesque trainee hair stylist again into the waiting room.

But even then, his daughter found no comfort.

"We were in the waiting room and she was just lying across two or three seats and then she got up off that and just started lying across the floor, she seemed more comfortable lying down than sitting up," Mr Core told a Medical Council Fitness to Practise Committee inquiry yesterday.

Mr Core said he believed she was in the consultation room with Dr A for just three or four minutes and that all he remembered Dr A doing was checking his daughter's pulse, listening to her breathing and checking his computer after the doctor was told about a blood test carried out by the same clinic on his daughter the month before.

"I said, 'she's not well' and he said, 'she's a fine big girl.'

"The doctor said 'Give her this (Motilium) and you'll see a difference within 72 hours'," Mr Core said in his evidence.

The following morning, July 1, 2007, Vicki Core collapsed in the presence of her mother Maureen at their Tallaght home and died on the way to hospital.

A subsequent post-mortem found she had died from severe bronchial pneumonia, not the gastric flu that had been diagnosed as her illness on the evening before she passed away.

The inquiry is examining a number of allegations which have been brought against the doctor who saw her the night before she died.

These include that he failed to carry out a proper examination on Ms Core, that he failed to give adequate consideration to the symptoms she and her family were reporting to him and that he failed to arrange for her to be transferred to hospital.

Dr A also faces the allegation that he altered his medical records after he became aware of Ms Core's death.

He denies all of the allegations.

In his evidence, Thomas Core said Vicki went to bed when she got home. Later that evening she told her father that she was still feeling unwell and he told her to give the medicine time to work.

The following day he was called urgently to the hospital.

He said he knew there was something seriously wrong when he and his son arrived at the hospital as there were people waiting for them at the entrance.

"We were asked to go a room. My son had to identify her as I couldn't do it. They said she died at 10 o'clock."

His wife Maureen said that when she heard the news Vicki had died she "just dropped the phone".

"I thought she's still alive because she just left in an ambulance and then my friend told me she had died," she said.

The inquiry continues today.

Jerome Reilly

Irish Independent

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