Hospital lets stranger breastfeed patient's newborn

Published On: Jan 07 2014 10:37:34 PM CST
Rosenberg, Texas -

A hospital mix up, involving a newborn baby, has a family speaking to an attorney about their experience.

Jessica Powell gave says she gave birth to her daughter, Melanie, at OakBend Medical Center on Dec. 10. Powell says later that day, a nurse brought a baby into the room. Noticing that it was the wrong baby, Powell asked the nurse where her baby was.

Turns out, Powell's newborn was taken to a strangers room by mistake. To make matters worse for Powell, that stranger had just breastfed her baby daughter. According to the hospital, that mother who breastfed Powell's daughter, thought the baby that was hers.

Hospitals do have policies and procedures in place to prevent situations such as this. Many hospital that perform deliveries also have micro chipped wristbands that confirm the baby is with the correct parent, and/or hasn't been taken from the hospital.

It's not clear what preventative systems OakBend Medical Center has in place.

Local 2 reached out to OakBend Medical Center who says it regrets what happened to the Powell Family. The hospital released this statement:

"OakBend Medical Center sincerely regrets that one of the infants in the nursery was taken to the incorrect mother to be breast feed.  The mistake was discovered immediately when one of the mother's questioned the nurse about whether the baby was hers.  The baby never left the hospital with the wrong parents. OakBend management was immediately contacted and investigated the incident.  Certain measures were taken to address the matter including the termination of the nurse from the hospital and reporting the incident to the nursing board of the State of Texas for failure to follow the hospital's policy to ensure that the wristbands of mother and baby matched.
The mother who breast fed the infant graciously allowed OakBend to test her for infectious and contagious diseases.  The tests were negative and showed the mother to be healthy. This is an egregious violation of hospital policy and won't be accepted at OakBend.  All staff in the unit have been retrained on the handling of babies and informed that failure to fully comply with this policy will lead to immediate termination."

The Powell family tells Local 2 they have spoken with an attorney.

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