Ellie-May Clark arrived slightly late for her appointment but her GP refused to see her and did not even open her file.
A coroner has ruled it was unacceptable that a five-year-old girl died after she was turned away from an emergency doctors for being minutes late.
Ellie-May Clark had been booked for an emergency appointment because she was having breathing difficulties but arrived five minutes late, an inquest heard.
Newport Coroner’s Court heard her mother, who had an eight-week-old baby and did not have a car, was given just 25 minutes to get Ellie-May to the Grange Clinic in Newport, South Wales, but got stuck in a queue at the surgery.
The inquest was told that the doctor refused to see patients who were more than 10 minutes late.
Doctors at the surgery had been warned by a consultant that the girl was at risk of a “severe/life-threatening” asthma episode.
But the youngster was turned away and went home to bed, where she collapsed about five hours later and died in hospital.
…Aren’t doctors supposed to put preservation of life ahead of all else?
A Modern Version of the Hippocratic Oath
I swear to fulfill, to the best of my ability and judgment, this covenant:
I will respect the hard-won scientific gains of those physicians in whose steps I walk, and gladly share such knowledge as is mine with those who are to follow.
I will apply, for the benefit of the sick, all measures which are required, avoiding those twin traps of overtreatment and therapeutic nihilism.
I will remember that there is art to medicine as well as science, and that warmth, sympathy, and understanding may outweigh the surgeon’s knife or the chemist’s drug.
I will not be ashamed to say “I know not,” nor will I fail to call in my colleagues when the skills of another are needed for a patient’s recovery.
I will respect the privacy of my patients, for their problems are not disclosed to me that the world may know. Most especially must I tread with care in matters of life and death. If it is given me to save a life, all thanks. But it may also be within my power to take a life; this awesome responsibility must be faced with great humbleness and awareness of my own frailty. Above all, I must not play at God.
I will remember that I do not treat a fever chart, a cancerous growth, but a sick human being, whose illness may affect the person’s family and economic stability. My responsibility includes these related problems, if I am to care adequately for the sick.
I will prevent disease whenever I can, for prevention is preferable to cure.
I will remember that I remain a member of society, with special obligations to all my fellow human beings, those sound of mind and body as well as the infirm.
If I do not violate this oath, may I enjoy life and art, respected while I live and remembered with affection thereafter. May I always act so as to preserve the finest traditions of my calling and may I long experience the joy of healing those who seek my help.