11 Mar 2009

Midwife denies wrongdoing over stillbirth

6:25 pm on 11 March 2009

A Northland midwife charged with misconduct has disputed a mother's version of events leading up to the stillbirth of a baby.

Monique Kapua is before the Health Practitioners Disciplinary Tribunal after she let a pregnancy continue to 43 weeks, resulting in the death of a baby boy.

Ms Kapua is accused of not discussing the risks of a prolonged pregnancy and not carrying out standard ante-natal tests.

The mother was 21 days overdue when she delivered her stillborn son, Felix, in 2006.

Earlier, the mother told the tribunal she was shocked when Ms Kapua went on holiday without notice after the baby's due date.

On Wednesday, Ms Kapua said the mother denied all clinical care, including inducing labour, despite being overdue.

She told the tribunal the mother declined to see a consultant and asked for no notes to be taken.

The evidence strongly contradicts the mother's account of events and the facts presented by the director of proceedings for the Health and Disability Commissioner.

Though Ms Kapua denied wrongdoing, she admitted she may have made an error of judgment. She also tearfully apologised for any pain and distress she may have caused.

The baby's mother sat shaking her head during some of the evidence on Wednesday.