A sick tot who was sent home by A&E doctors at Bradford Royal Infirmary was found to be suffering from potentially-fatal pneumonia when he was admitted to another hospital two days later.
One-year-old Archie Lumley had been taken by ambulance to BRI on Boxing Day after he was examined by a paramedic who advised that he needed to be admitted by the hospital.
But after waiting hours to see a doctor at the hospital the youngster was sent home with a course of antibiotics.
After two days of watching his condition further deteriorate, despite the medication, his family became so worried about him they took him to Airedale Hospital near Keighley for a second opinion.
Doctors there gave him a chest X-ray which showed a patch on his lung and he was diagnosed with pneumonia. He was immediately admitted for treatment which included being given oxygen for three days to help him breathe.
His family say they now intend to lodge an official complaint to hospital chiefs in Bradford about the standard of his care.
Archie’s grandmother, 50-year-old Alison Barry who cares for him at her home in Fawcett Place, Bierley, said: “I am fuming because if they had done what they were supposed to do at BRI we could have saved ourselves the stress that he was having and that I was having.
“I am complaining because I want them to pull themselves together and deal with patients as they should do.
“We don’t want this to happen to anyone else. The point is they should not turn babies away. Pneumonia can kill. If it had been a teenage mum she might not have had the confidence to go back to hospital again. I have had five kids so I knew something was seriously wrong.”
Archie, who was one year old on December 8, began to appear unwell on Christmas Day.
“We left him overnight to see how he was but by Boxing day he couldn’t breathe and was so limp he couldn’t lift his head up,” said Mrs Barry. “I felt like I wanted to breathe for him.
“I phoned the emergency doctor but couldn’t get through. I then phoned NHS Direct and they sent a paramedic who said Archie needed to be admitted to hospital. He called for an ambulance and we were taken to BRI at about noon.
“Archie was limp, breathing peculiarly and I couldn’t touch him he was that hot.”
Mrs Barry said once at hospital Archie was weighed, bloods were taken and his temperature was taken, which was sky high. They waited for hours to see a medic and expected Archie to be admitted but instead they sent him home.
“They fobbed us off with antibiotics,” said Mrs Barry. “It was awful that night. I did not sleep at all I was so scared he was going to stop breathing and he was getting hotter and hotter.
“After two days there was no sign of improvement so I took him to Airedale. As soon as we got there they admitted him. They were brilliant. They did a chest x-ray straight away which showed that he had a patch on his lung. They gave him oxygen and put tubes in him. He was very poorly.”
Archie was discharged on New Year’s Day and is continuing to recover at home with medication and a nebuliser.
Bradford Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, which runs BRI and St Luke’s Hospital, said: “We cannot comment on individual cases but if the family would like to contact us and make a formal complaint we can respond to their concerns directly.”