NWRHA denies delaying medical records for 16 babies

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NWRHA denies delaying medical records for 16 babies

The North West Regional Health Authority (NWRHA) says contrary to reports, it is not intentionally delaying providing medical records for 16 babies who died. The parents of the babies are being represented by Freedom Law Chambers.

There statements follows concerns raised by Freedom Law Chambers over what it called the suppression of medical records.

However, the NWRHA said contrary to those allegations, “no requests have been made for the medical records of these 16 neonates to the NWRHA before April 12, 2024, from either patients/parents or attorneys acting on their behalf. As part of the standard practice at the NWRHA, all requests for medical records are recorded at the time of the request.”

“There were subsequent requests for additional medical records as the number of proposed claims rose. By April 23, 2024 the NWRHA had provided copies of the medical records for 11 neonates which satisfies all requests received to date. Receipt of the 11 records was confirmed by Freedom Law Chambers on April 24, 2024,” the NWRHA contended.

With regard to specific allegations of an undue delay about infants who died in February of this year, the NWRHA said it received a formal request from Freedom Law Chambers on April 17 and those records have been provided.

“As such there was no 57-day delay between the date of request and the date of receipt, as maliciously alleged,” it stated.

“In our history of treating with medical negligence matters before the Court, the Judiciary has never found the NWRHA to have tampered or manipulated medical records. Reckless, misleading and speculative accusations suggestive of tampering and/or sanitisation by the NWRHA are unfounded.”

The NWRHA said that patients and parents of infants have the right to request their medical records at any time.

“Requests can also be made through legal representatives, such as Attorneys-at-Law and they are facilitated. There is a standard process of verification by the Medical Records Officer that must be followed once the records are requested by an external party,” it advised.

The regional health authority called for responsible conduct during this time, adding that misguided allegations will only exacerbate the distress surrounding these matters.