Inquest into the death of Poppy Rushton

The parents of a baby who died at a scandal-hit hospital have told an inquest of the 'chaos' when their daughter was born 'purple and limp' before being placed like a 'dead weight' on her mother's chest.

Poppy Rushton was 'grey, purple and unresponsive' when she was born at Furness General Hospital, Cumbria, on March 3 2016. She died five days later. 

The coroner will consider the monitoring of Poppy's heartbeat half an hour before her death, as well as the care she received afterwards.

Poppy Rushton's parents Michael and Kayleigh (pictured together) arrive at the inquest into their daughter's death at Cockermouth Coroner's Court 

Poppy Rushton's parents Michael and Kayleigh (pictured together) arrive at the inquest into their daughter's death at Cockermouth Coroner's Court 

Devastated mother Kayleigh Rushton, 29, is a paediatric nurse at the hospital where Poppy was born.

She told the hearing at Cockermouth Coroner's Court: 'We feel the care given to Poppy fell woefully short of what should have been expected.

'Her chances of survival may have been increased if better care had been given, especially the resuscitation and the chaos that surrounded it.

'We are very upset and devastated by our beautiful daughter passing away and we are very angry to learn about the failures and that Lindsey Biggs was allowed to continue in her role while being investigated for her part in another baby's death several years earlier.'

Ms Biggs was one of a band of midwives accused of colluding to cover up blunders which contributed to the deaths of at least 11 babies and one mother. 

The group – who dubbed themselves 'the musketeers' - continued working at the NHS trust despite public outrage over the deaths, which occurred between 2004 and 2013.

An inquiry found there was a 'dysfunctional culture' on the maternity unit at Furness General Hospital and there had been a 'lethal mix' of failures.  

Ms Biggs was one of the midwives involved in the care of baby Joshua Titcombe in November 2008, who died from a serious infection just nine days after he was born.

Following an investigation into Joshua's death, she was struck off and banned from practising for at least five years in October 2016.

Lindsey Biggs (pictured) was allowed to continue in her role despite being investigated for her part in another baby, Joshua Titcombe's, death several years earlier

Lindsey Biggs (pictured) was allowed to continue in her role despite being investigated for her part in another baby, Joshua Titcombe's, death several years earlier

Speaking at the inquest into her daughter's death Mrs Rushton said: 'I was admitted to hospital to be induced on March 2 and I was shown around and had my observations taken. They attached a CT monitor and a midwife explained I had a high heart rate.

'At 3am I started actively pushing. Ms Biggs didn't say much to me all night but she told me to save my energy and not shout out as much.

'I can't remember her speaking to me or even introducing herself. She wasn't friendly or encouraging.'

Mrs Rushton told area coroner Kally Cheema

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