Portiuncula Hospital apologises for 'failures in care' in maternity services

Many Leitrim mothers chose maternity services in Ballinasloe

Fiona Heavey

Reporter:

Fiona Heavey

Portiuncula Hospital apologises for 'failures in care' in maternity services

Portiuncula Hospital, Ballinasloe

A report into maternity services at Portiuncula University Hospital, ballinasloe has criticised the hospital for poor communication among maternity staff and a lack of skills and training to deal with emergency cases.

Many Leitrim mothers chose Portiuncula Hospital as their maternity hospital.

The report was commissioned in January 2015 to examine the care of 18 babies at the hospital in Galway. It found that there was a general lack of skills and training among front line staff.

The report said that "care when things were progressing normally appeared to be of a high standard but the response to a deteriorating situation was often slow and deficient". Particular concerns are the lack of skills in the assessment of CTGs and the lack of access to quality ultrasound scanning and training.

The report also said that there were nine cases of major management errors which would have probably made a difference to the outcome of the case. There was a lack of obstetric consultant supervision in the labour ward, according to the report.

It said that consultants appeared to wait to be called and did not take ownership of the clinical care being given and this resulted in an inappropriate handover of care.

The lawyer for Warren and Lorraine Reilly, to whom Portiuncula Hospital has apologised for the failings in the care of their two children who died in the hospital's care has described the report as shocking but not surprising.

Portiuncula Hospital in County Galway has implemented a range of changes to improve care since a review of maternity care started in 2015. Dr Pat Nash, group chief clinical director with Saolta University Health Care Group, apologised to the families affected, saying "I want to take the opportunity to apologise again to the families for the failures in the care identified and also for the length of time that this review has taken."