Death by medical
misadventure

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Dhara Kivlehan’s death was due to medical misadventure, a jury has found following a five-day inquest in Carrick-on-Shannon.

Dhara Kivlehan’s death was due to medical misadventure, a jury has found following a five-day inquest in Carrick-on-Shannon.

Welcoming the verdict which came on the fourth anniversary of Dhara’s death, her husband Michael Kivlehan from Dromahair said he did not want other relatives to go through the same thing. He urged fathers not to be afraid to challenge doctors.

“I would like to get the message out there to lay people that child birth is not always that simple”, he said. “And to tell the fathers they need to be more supportive of their women, especially if they have any concerns – and to have the strength to challenge doctors”.

Referring to his experience of some staff in Sligo he said medics should improve their bedside manner.

The jury of five men and two women made a number of recommendations, reflecting concerns raised by the family of the 29 year old during the five day hearing.

They urged that all blood tests done in hospitals be followed up by the doctor who ordered them and that any critical issues be flagged by laboratory staff.

The jury also recommended that, without delay, a database of all available critical care beds be made known to all hospitals, regional and national, so that they could be accessed when required .

And they called for mandatory levels of six staff and six beds in ICUs and for all consultants involved in surgical procedures to record their presence on theatre charts.

Speaking after the verdict Coroner Eamon MacGowan wished the Kivlehan family peace, tranquillity and contentment. “Michael has vindicated Dhara’s life and explained it through his campaign to have this inquest heard. I am sorry it has taken four years to do so,” said Mr MacGowan.

See pages 4 and 5 of this week’s Leitrim Observer for more on this story.