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Best Interest of the Hospital

February 11, 2014 permalink

British child protectors menaced parents Pete and Sarka Celliers for reasons having nothing to do with the well-being of their son Jean. A nurse was accidentally exposed to the infants blood and wanted him tested for HIV. The parents did not want more blood drawn from their baby, but offered to get themselves tested instead. Child protectors conducted an interrogation in which they treated the parents like scum. The hospital showed concern, or lack of it, by identifying the sex of the boy as "female".

Technical note: It is just about impossible for a baby to get HIV infection from any source but his mother. That's because babies don't engage in the risky behaviors that spread HIV. How many babies engage in anal intercourse, or inject recreational drugs with reused needles? An HIV test of the mother would have been adequate.

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Social workers swoop on couple who refused to let son have HIV test because they feared he might have infected a nurse

  • Hospital staff wanted test after nurse was pricked with blood test needle
  • Parents Pete and Sarka Celliers did not want their son put through ordeal
  • Reported for refusing 'medical advice … regarding a very young baby'
Sarka Celliers with Jean
Sarka Celliers was investigated for neglect after a doctor pricked a nurse with a needle carrying her baby Jean's blood

A couple were reported to social services for refusing to let hospital staff test their nine-week-old baby for HIV.

When their son Jean developed a slight temperature one night, Pete and Sarka Celliers took him to hospital as a precaution.

But their visit to St Peter’s Hospital in Chertsey, Surrey, led to them being investigated for neglect, treated ‘like scum’ and left fearing their baby would be taken away.

They say their nightmare began when a consultant was carrying out a blood test on Jean in A&E.

As the consultant handed the needle to a nurse she accidentally pricked the nurse’s skin.

Two hours later, during which time the couple claim they were left in a bay without a bed for their son, they were asked for permission to test Jean for HIV/hepatitis because the nurse’s skin had been pricked with his blood.

Mr Celliers, 38, said: ‘The whole thing was very unprofessional, the first time they took about five tries to get the line into my son’s tiny hand.

'He was screaming in pain and my wife and I were in tears.

‘It was almost 4am and they had already removed the cannula from his hand and given us no real care.

‘There was no way I was going to put my son, who had just fallen asleep after a traumatic night, through that ordeal again. It was not in his best interest.’

Mrs Celliers, 35, said: ‘We offered to be tested instead, whatever we have Jean would have, but they declined.

'He was born at the hospital and they have all our records, what could have possibly have happened to him in just nine weeks?’

Having discussed Jean’s condition with another paediatrician who said his tests were clear, the Celliers took their son home at 4am.

However, the next day the hospital repeatedly called the couple at their semi-detached £550,000 home in Walton-on-Thames, asking them to bring Jean in for further tests.

Mr Celliers said: ‘I couldn’t see why we should, Jean was happy and playing. They said he could have meningitis, which was obviously not the case as the tests were clear and he had no symptoms.

By now we had lost all trust in St Peter’s. I refused and said he was well but I would get a second opinion – at which point the doctor threatened to report us to social services. I thought it was a spiteful act.’

Then two social workers arrived at the couple’s home. The couple were told the surprise visit was due to a referral from St Peter’s because they had ‘refused medical advice … regarding a very young baby’.

Mrs Celliers, a childminder, said: ‘I was in bits, I honestly thought they had come to take my baby away. They looked at us like we were scum.’

Pete and Sarka Celliers with Jean
Pete and Sarka Celliers were paid a visit by social workers because they had 'refused medical advice... regarding a very young baby'

After the couple explained what had happened they said the social workers were happy all was well.

The couple took Jean to a different hospital, Royal Surrey in Guildford, to get a second opinion on his condition.

Mr Celliers said: ‘Two hospitals, looking at the same tests, came to two very different conclusions.

'It just confirms to me that St Peter’s just wanted to get their hands on Jean for the HIV tests to cover themselves against any mistakes made when the nurse was injured.’

After writing a complaint to Ashford and St Peter’s Hospital Trust about their visit on January 23, Mr Celliers also requested his son’s medical notes – which showed that Jean was referred to as a female throughout.

‘That just tells me that my son was not their priority, they didn’t even know he was boy,’ he said.

Surrey County Council confirmed that social services visited the Celliers following a referral from St Peter’s. A spokesman added: ‘No concerns were identified and the case was closed.’

The Trust’s chief nurse, Suzanne Rankin, said: ‘We are sorry to hear the family’s experience of our hospital was not better and are particularly concerned that they felt harassed by members of our staff.

‘We look forward to meeting with the family and to hearing their feelings and concerns in person, and will work hard to address their issues so no other families have the same or similar experience.’

A spokesman for the Trust added: ‘In this case a small baby was taken home against medical advice.

‘Small babies can deteriorate over a few hours and in good faith our staff wanted to carry out a further clinical review to make sure the baby’s health hadn’t deteriorated.

‘That level of concern is enough to trigger a referral to social services. At that point the consultant in charge was not aware that the family were planning to take the baby to their GP or to an alternative hospital.’

Source: Daily Mail

doctor taking blood sample

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