Sunday 18 February 2018

Father of new mother 'cut in two' in hospital lift after giving birth demands answers

Rocio Cortes Nunez, 26, who had just given birth when she was reportedly cut in half when a hospital lift malfunctioned in Seville, southern Spain Photo: Facebook
Rocio Cortes Nunez, 26, who had just given birth when she was reportedly cut in half when a hospital lift malfunctioned in Seville, southern Spain Photo: Facebook

Jeff Farrell

The father of a new mother who was "cut in half" in a hospital lift shortly after giving birth has demanded answers over her death.

Rocío Cortés Nunez, 25, was pushed on her stretcher into the elevator which suddenly took off before she was all the way in, leaving her head trapped in the doors while the rest of her body pulled away.

Hundreds walked behind a hearse carrying her coffin in the town of Dos Hermanas in Seville, Spain.

Her father Juan Manuel Cortes later spoke out over her death, saying: “They have killed my beautiful daughter, the joy of my life. No father should have to bury their daughter.”

Mr Cortes dismissed claims Ms Nunez’s death in Valme Hospital in Seville on Sunday was a freak accident and said the lifts, which he said were 30 years old, should not have been in use.

And he insisted that two porters, rather than one, should have accompanied Ms Nunez when she was being moved from the second to the third floor after giving birth by C-section.

Her mother María del Carmen Nunez also criticised the hospital and demanded that in their investigation “they find somebody responsible for the death of my daughter”.

She added the lifts at the clinic did not have “adequate maintenance” amid suspicions that a mechanical or electronic failure was to blame for the tragedy.

Ms Nunez’s husband Jose Gaspar also spoke out at the funeral and demanded the hospital take action. He told Spanish paper ABC: “This cannot end like this. This time it has been Rocio but tomorrow it could be another person. I'm a total wreck.”

It has now emerged that Ms Nunez’s baby boy Triana was not with the young mother when a porter was moving her from the second to the third floor of the hospital. The infant was moved to a specialist hospital after developing respiratory problems but is now said to be in full health.

One unnamed hospital worker said: “If they hadn't taken the baby to another hospital she could have suffered the same fate because they always put new-borns on their mother's breast, even when it's been a Caesarian.”

Regional health minister Marina Alvarez described the incident as a “quick, unusual and tragic accident” which came after the lift made an “unusual movement” when it suddenly lurched up.

Officials in Valme Hospital, who are investigating the tragedy, said the elevator had been fully inspected just over a week earlier during a regular check and no problems had been detected.

Investigators are working on the theory that the lift moved before Ms Nunez was fully inside because of a mechanical or electronic failure with the automatically controlled door.

Independent News Service

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