A devastated dad has spoken about the day his toddler daughter died after waiting an hour to be seen at the Marston Surgery.
Eric Linforth, 33 appeared as a witness at the inquest into the death of his daughter, 23 month-old Lucie who died on October 15 last year.
Eric told the Ampthill hearing on Wednesday that the family had only just moved to Marston Moretaine when Lucie was taken ill, and had not yet registered themselves with the practice.
The night before the October 5 incident Lucie had enjoyed chicken nuggets for tea, but was not her normal self and seemed restless when she was put to bed at 6pm.
Eric, who lives with his partner Angie Collins, 40 and their two other children, told how he noticed Lucie wasn’t settling, and she began coughing and vomitted juice that the couple gave her.
After a restless night Eric told how he took Lucie to the Marston Surgery along with completed registration forms.
When he arrived he said he wasn’t overly concerned as, although Lucie wasn’t very responsive and her breathing was laboured, she had a history of these types of cold.
Eric, who is a full-time carer for Lucie’s autistic twin brother Jake, said that after a receptionist checked that they could be seen, they were told to wait, and that it would be quicker if they saw a nurse.
During the wait Lucie’s condition deteriorated and she seemed to overheat, so Eric took her outside to cool her down - other patients also commented about how poorly the tot was looking.
Speaking about the reaction of the receptionists on the day, Eric said: “She asked how ill she was, I held Lucie up to her and said ‘what do you think’.”
He added: “I sat down directly in front of the reception hatch, she (Lucie) was sat on my knee, she was very floppy and very agitated and didn’t have the energy to cry or speak.”
The inquest, which will continue until Friday, also heard from practice nurse Ellen Clegg, who saw Lucie as her sixth patient that day.
She said that if a patient’s condition escalates in the waiting room the reception usually informs a doctor or nurse and that patient is pushed to the front of the queue.
Ellen told how Eric had seemed relaxed when he brought Lucie to see her that morning but said she had been sick overnight and had a high temperature.
Although Ellen said that there were no signs of breathing problems at the start of the appointment, when she went to lift Lucie down to examine her she collapsed. Medical help was called but there were no signs of life after that.
The inquest continues.