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Baby Dies And Another Left Brain Damaged In Oxygen Mix Up

A newborn baby has died, and another has been left damaged after they were given doses of nitrogen gas instead of oxygen in a 'devastating error' at the Bankstown-Lidcombe Hospital in Sydney.

The fatal mix-up occurred in one of the hospital birthing rooms when an outlet in a neonatal resuscitation unit emitted nitrous oxide, known as happy gas.

Doctors had instructed 'oxygen' to be given to the babies, born in June and mid-July, to help them cope after struggling through birth. The deadly mistake only ended up being realised after a paediatrician raised the alarm after the second baby died.

The first newborn is currently fighting for life and remains in a critical condition.

Health Minister Jillian Skinner described it as a 'devastating error'' and said she was ''profoundly sorry'' to the grief-stricken families.

Her department has now launched a full-scale investigation, she said ''

I reassure the public of the safety of Bankstown-Lidcombe Hospital and hospitals across NSW.”

“Bankstown-Lidcombe Hospital has checked all eight operating theatres and found an installation fault in only one theatre.''

The error has been corrected but the theatre is still closed.

NSW State Government said that the information about the error had not been released immediately as the families wanted more time to come terms with the situation.

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