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'Savita was just left to, die. IT WAS inhuman, barbaric...'

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Praveen Halappanavar outside Galway County Hall. Photo: PA

Praveen Halappanavar outside Galway County Hall. Photo: PA

Praveen Halappanavar outside Galway County Hall. Photo: PA

Praveen Halappanavar has described his wife Savita's treatment as "horrendous, barbaric and inhuman".

After an inquest jury ruled unanimously that Savita's death was by medical misadventure, her husband said his wife was left to die.

Mrs Halappanavar was 17 weeks pregnant when admitted to the University Hospital Galway on October 21 last year with an inevitable miscarriage.

She died from multi-organ failure from septic shock and E coli, four days after she delivered a dead foetus.

Speaking in Galway after the verdict, Mr Halappanavar said his wife did not benefit in any way from going to the hospital until the Wednesday afternoon, when transferred to high dependency and on to intensive care.

"It was too late," he said, after the eight-day hearing.

"The care she received was in no way different to staying at home.

Horrendous

"Medicine is all about preventing the natural history of the disease and improving the patient's life and health and look what they did. She was just left there to die.

"We were always kept in the dark.

"If Savita would have known her life was at risk, she would have jumped off the bed, straight to a different hospital. But we were never told. It's horrendous, barbaric and inhuman the way Savita was treated in that hospital."

The couple should have been celebrating their fifth wedding anniversary yesterday.

Thanked

Praveen says he is still considering further action through the courts in Europe as he believes his wife's human right to life was breached.

The jury at the coroner's court deliberated for two hours and 40 minutes before it returned the verdict and endorsed nine recommendations that were designed to protect patients in the future.

The misadventure verdict found that there were systemic failures or deficiencies in Mrs Halappanavar's care before she died, but coroner Dr Ciaran MacLoughlin warned that they did not contribute to her death.

Praveen (34) shook hands with the coroner and jury members at the end of the hearing, moments after his solicitor openly thanked the coroner for his "extraordinary sensitivity and logic" during the inquest.

The coroner had told the widower the whole of Ireland sympathised with him.

"Praveen, I want to offer you my sincerest and deepest condolences on the death of Savita," Dr MacLoughlin said.

"You showed tremendous loyalty in the love to her during her last week .

"The whole of Ireland has followed your story and I want, on their behalf, to offer our deepest sympathy.

"You will also be watched over and protected by the shadow of Savita who was in our thoughts during this painful and difficult journey."

The wedding anniversary is not the first time the widower has been forced to relive his ordeal on a significant date.

 

Upsetting

He was given a health service internal review of his wife's death on March 30, the day their baby Prasa had been due.

Praveen said last night that although suffering severe loneliness he felt Savita's presence "everywhere and that's where I get my strength from.

"She's always been there for me. I can't still imagine myself standing on my own.".

During the emotional PrimeTime interview the engineer said he still loves Ireland and plans to stay here despite what's happened.

"The support I have here is overwhelming. The Irish public have been full of heart."

hnews@herald.ie


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