Manchester Evening News - - FRONT PAGE - By ANN CU­SACK


A DOC­TOR has been struck off for ly­ing af­ter mis­di­ag­nos­ing a six-yearold girl who later died from menin­gi­tis.

Layla-Rose Ermenekli, from Old­ham, was taken to hospi­tal by her mother in Fe­bru­ary 2017, with a high tem­per­a­ture, a headache and stom­ach ache.

The doc­tor wanted to send her back home and dis­missed a rash as ‘bruises.’

Af­ter spend­ing eight hours at The Royal Old­ham Hospi­tal, Layla-Rose went into car­diac ar­rest and died from meningo­coc­cal menin­gi­tis and sep­ti­caemia.

A re­port car­ried out by the Pen­nine Acute Hos­pi­tals NHS Trust crit­i­cised doc­tors, say­ing that Lay­laRose’s mother’s con­cerns were not lis­tened to – and that there were two missed op­por­tu­ni­ties to recog­nise the rash.

Now Dr Har­sha Ra­janna has been struck off the med­i­cal regis­ter at a Gen­eral Med­i­cal Coun­cil hear­ing in Manch­ester.

More than 20 mis­takes and dis­hon­est state­ments were proven against him.

The hear­ing was told how Dr Ra­janna had failed to con­sider sep­sis; failed to take blood tests; and failed to give flu­ids.

He then lied about his fail­ings.

Layla-Rose’s mum Kirsty, 34, said the doc­tor ‘didn’t lis­ten’ to her con­cerns.

Kirsty was heav­ily preg­nant with her fourth child when Layla-Rose fell ill in Fe­bru­ary 2017.

Her son had been ill with ton­sil­li­tis, so she thought Layla-Rose had the same bug. But when the child’s tem­per­a­ture rose, she took her to hospi­tal to be on the ‘safe side.’ Layla-Rose was com­plain­ing of stom­ach and head pain and be­gan vom­it­ing in the hospi­tal.

A doc­tor ad­vised Kirsty to take her home, an in­quest pre­vi­ously heard. “I told them I wasn’t happy about tak­ing her home be­cause Layla seemed so un­well,” Kirsty said. The lit­tle girl was then seen by a pae­di­a­tri­cian who found a red patch on Layla’s hip. “I told him it wasn’t a bruise and it had just come out of nowhere. But he said it was a bruise,” Kirsty added. “They started to spread – and I went into panic.” Layla-Rose be­gan strug­gling to breathe and was moved onto the High De­pen­dency Unit, where she was given an­tibi­otics. She had been in hospi­tal for six hours. Layla-Rose stopped breath­ing and died at 4am on Fe­bru­ary 4, 2017.

Layla-Rose was Kirsty and hus­band Ricky’s sec­ond el­dest child.

Kirsty named her son Laylen, in mem­ory of the big sis­ter he will never know. He was born just three months af­ter she died.

In the Pen­nine Acute Hos­pi­tals NHS Trust re­port, a num­ber of fail­ings were iden­ti­fied.

Layla-Rose should have seen a doc­tor within 10 min­utes of her ini­tial triage at the hospi­tal - she didn’t see one for an hour and 50 min­utes.

A rash on Layla-Rose’s body was dis­missed as a bruise and wasn’t writ­ten down in her notes, the trust re­port said.

Af­ter another wait, Layla-Rose was as­sessed by a ju­nior doc­tor, who picked up on the rash on her hip, but was told by the pre­vi­ous doc­tor it was just a bruise and not a new symp­tom.

Then, 30 min­utes later, another locum doc­tor noted the rash, in­serted a can­nula, took bloods and ad­min­is­tered an­tibi­otics for sep­sis.

The re­port read: “The doc­tor who saw the pa­tient ini­tially did not recog­nise the rash, which was not doc­u­mented at the time as be­ing of a wor­ry­ing na­ture, as a re­sult the di­ag­no­sis of sep­sis was missed for three and a half hours, dur­ing which treat­ment op­por­tu­ni­ties were missed.

“A sec­ond op­por­tu­nity to spot any rashes was missed when the rash was noted prior to trans­fer and es­ca­lated, false re-as­sur­ance was given that this was not a new find­ing so no ac­tion was taken.”

There was a ‘fail­ure to iden­tify the ad­vanced na­ture of the sep­sis and treat ac­cord­ingly,’ as well as a ‘fail­ure to recog­nise a ‘bruise’ as a pur­puric rash and there­fore as an in­di­ca­tor of meningo­coc­cal sep­sis, the re­port said. It also stated that Kirsty’s con­cerns were not lis­tened to.

She said: “I am pleased that the doc­tor who saw Layla has been struck off, I have been fight­ing for jus­tice for her for so long and he will not be able to make the same mis­takes with another child, which is a com­fort to me.

“But he lost his job, and we have lost our daugh­ter. How is that fair?”

Kirsty is now cam­paign­ing for Layla’s Law – to make menin­gi­tis vac­ci­na­tions avail­able to all chil­dren.

She also fundraises for the char­ity Menin­gi­tis Now.

Staff at The Royal Old­ham are now sent a pa­tient alert ask­ing to con­sider sep­sis when di­ag­nos­ing un­well chil­dren.

An in­quest in March 2018 recorded a nar­ra­tive con­clu­sion and found that Layla-Rose’s death could have been avoided, but for fail­ings in hospi­tal care.

I am pleased that the doc­tor who saw Layla has been struck off, I have been fight­ing for jus­tice

Mum Kirsty

Layla-Rose and par­ents Kirsty and Ricky

Struck off... Dr Har­sha Ra­janna

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