21 Feb 2014

Midwife admits she lacked skills

4:03 pm on 21 February 2014

The midwife caring for a Waikato woman who died after childbirth says she didn't have the skills or training for the unfolding situation.

The midwife, whose identity is suppressed, has been giving evidence at the inquest into the deaths of Casey Nathan, 20, and her newborn son Kymani in May 2012. The boy died two days after being born.

The midwife said on Thursday that it is very rare for a mother to collapse in the second stage of labour.

On Wednesday the inquest was told that Ms Nathan's faint started a catastrophic decline in her health.

There has been lengthy debate over exactly who was in charge of the delivery on Thursday. The midwife has always maintained that she was the lead carer, even though she was a junior practitioner. She said another woman "probably" ended up in charge, but she herself still had clinical responsibility.

Earlier, there was criticism of her record-keeping, which she conceded was below her own expectations. She said she could not explain why at one point there was no record of a foetal heart rate being taken.

The midwife said her note-taking was reasonable, but she acknowledged that she never measured Ms Nathan's height and weight during pregnancy.