Baby's home birth death prompts Coroner’s inquest

THE State Coroner will hold a week-long inquiry this month into the death of a newborn boy who died after being home-birthed in the Nimbin area in February last year.

The child was presented at Nimbin Hospital on February 16 in a critical condition following the home birth.

He died a short time later.

The five-day inquest will start on June 27 at the Lismore Court House and be heard by Deputy State Coroner Harriet Grahame.

The inquest is expected to call on 18 witnesses, including the baby's parents and others present at the birth, Nimbin Hospital medical staff working at the time, a pathologist, a paediatrician and other medical experts, NSW Family and Community Services staff, and an investigating detective.

Richmond Local Area Command police investigated the death of the child at the time and prepared a brief for the Coroner.

One the inquiry is complete, the Coroner has the power to refer its findings to the Department of Public Prosecutions for criminal proceedings.

It can also recommend changes to policy and procedures around issues such as the appropriate management of home births in NSW.

Topics:  home birth

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