Suspended jail terms for Dubai doctors who failed to save premature baby

Two doctors are given suspended six month jail terms for failing to give the appropriate medical care to a premature baby who died.

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DUBAI // Two paediatricians whose botched treatment of a prematurely born baby led to the girl’s death were yesterday given suspended six-month prison sentences.

R?N, from India, and B?A, 41, from Canada, failed to give the appropriate treatment when the baby – one of twins born to Filipina K?N on October 8 last year – started to have difficulty in breathing.

The difficulties continued until the girl died, just 22 hours after her birth.

The death was due to a failure by the two doctors “to perform basic medical techniques that every medicine professional should excel in”, according to an investigation by the Dubai Health Authority, which blamed the pair for negligence.

The authority said the Indian, a registered paediatrician, lacked the necessary skills to treat the child and that she failed to make a decision over the girl’s treatment in time to save her life.

The Canadian failed to accurately diagnose the baby’s condition, failed to recognise the need to move the baby to a specialised hospital, did not use a breathing aid correctly and was late in providing medication.

He also failed to provide a full report in the patient’s case file.

At the Misdemeanours Court the Canadian denied negligence charges.

“I’m not guilty. I have 15 years of experience,” he said.

The Indian was not present in court as she had resigned shortly after the death and returned to her home country.

The sentences were suspended for three years.