Children's Health

Baby suffers fractured skull after nurse allegedly fell asleep during feeding

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A Canadian mother said she is planning to sue after a nurse who was caring for her premature son allegedly fell asleep while feeding him and woke to him crying on the floor. The alleged incident left Kelsey Bond’s infant son, Keiran Keller, with a skull fracture, The National Post reported.

“I received a phone call at 8 o’clock in the morning saying that the nurse had fallen asleep feeding him and woke up to him crying on the floor,” Bond, 19, told The National Post. “She said she was sorry … and that a pediatrician had looked at him and said he was fine.”

Bond gave birth to Keiran and his twin brother, Kayden, at 29 weeks gestation at Kingston General Hospital on Dec. 23. They were transferred to Belleville General in February, where they were tended to in a special-care nursery, The National Post reported. Kayden was released Feb. 10, but Keiran had a lung condition and other health issues that required additional care.

Bond told the news outlet that on the evening of the Feb. 20 phone call regarding Keiran’s fall, she arrived at Belleville General, and noticed his head looked red and swollen. A second pediatrician reportedly told her Kiernan was fine.

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“I had a gut feeling that everything wasn’t OK,” said Bond, according to The National Post.

She also reportedly discovered through a hospital document that the fall occurred five hours prior to when she received the phone call. The nurse involved in the alleged incident was not punished.

“The nurse is not suspended; she is not fired; there is no punishment for her,” Bond told the news outlet.

She requested Keirnan be transferred to Kingston where an ultrasound and CT scan revealed a depressed fracture in his skull and an acute subdural hematoma, The National Post reported. He was released Feb. 27 after another ultrasound, but was having trouble feeding and was admitted to Peterborough Regional Health Centre before being transferred to Kingston. He was released March 2, according to the report.

Bond told The National Post it may take from six months to a year for his injury to heal, and that an appointment at a special development clinic is booked for May. While hospital officials said they are investigating the incident and Quinte Health issued an apology, Bond said her concerns are not being addressed.

A Quinte Health Care spokesperson told the news outlet that an investigation is ongoing and that the nurse reported the incident immediately.

“Our staff are also human and so when things like this happen we are really sorry,” the spokesperson told The National Post.

Bond said she has contacted a lawyer and plans to sue for neglect.

“If she was tired, she shouldn’t have gone to work,” she said of the unidentified nurse. “She’s risking children’s lives, and these aren’t just normal, full-term babies. They need special care.”