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Parents want justice for baby’s fatal misdiagnosis

Aimee Abela.Aimee Abela.

Aimee Abela was just two years old when doctors fatally misdiagnosed her menin­gitis as gastric flu.

But although a magisterial inquiry confirmed this missed diagnosis and said seven doctors should face criminal charges, Aimee’s parents have never heard a word about a promised Medical Council inquiry into their daughter’s death.

Jacqueline and Carlo Abela yesterday filed a judicial protest to this effect, saying Malta’s top medical brass have kept them in the dark since Aimee died in February 2011.

The protest was filed against the Medical Council, the director general of the Health Department and the Chief Government Medical Officer.

The Abelas want to know why, over the past 24 months, they have never been told of an inquiry into the circumstances leading to their daughter’s death, asked to give their version of events or been told of any disciplinary action faced by the seven doctors who stand accused of having negligently contributed to their daughter’s death.

The Times asked the council whether it had held an inquiry into Aimee’s death. A council spokeswoman replied by quoting regulations stating all inquiries must be public and saying the council had not yet received notice of the judicial protest.

Questions seeking to clarify this answer were not replied to by the time of writing.

“Nobody can bring my daughter back,” Ms Abela said, “but we want them to at the very least be more responsible.

“My child is dead and it seems nobody has learnt anything from it all.”

The Abelas say they were promised an inquiry into their daughter’s death a few months after she passed away.

Their lawyer, Abigail Galea, told The Times that they had written confirmation that an inquiry would be held.

“Almost two years have passed since then, but we’ve never heard anything back. It’s been an uphill struggle to get to the truth from the outset,” Ms Abela said.

She and her husband want the authorities responsible to come clean and bring them into an inquiry, calling for them to testify and inform them of each hearing beforehand.

Sources indicated the Health Department would be filing a counter-protest to rebut the claims made by the Abela family.

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