Tuesday 14 July, 2020

Pregnant Jamaican denied by hospitals dies after giving birth

Jodian Fearon

Jodian Fearon

Jamaican Prime Minister Andrew Holness has responded directly to developments surrounding the tragic death of a mother after childbirth subsequent to being transferred from or rejected by a number of prominent local hospitals because of flu-like symptoms which she was exhibiting while in labour and bed space issues in one case.

Twenty-six-year-old university graduate, Jodian Fearon, had reportedly made arrangements to have her baby at Andrews Memorial Hospital, a prominent private health facility, but was ultimately transferred from the facility because of medical complications, but also centrally, the COVID-19-like symptoms which she had.

Reports are that only through frantic efforts from a senior gynaecologist in private practice was she able to eventually give birth to her child at the Spanish Town Hospital, this after failed efforts to gain access to a number of other Corporate Area hospitals. Unfortunately, while she successfully gave birth, Fearon died the next day at another hospital to which she was transferred.

For a close-up perspective of the actual experience of Jodian Fearon, Dr Lloyd Goldson, who worked valiantly against the odds to try to safely take the woman and her child through childbirth, spoke in the video below.

Arising from wide-scale condemnation of the national health system by persons on social media, and blanket calls for a direct response at the highest level of governance in the country, Holness stepped up and responded in a statement on Sunday.

Prime Minister Andrew Holness

Below is the text of the PM’s statement.

In the statement, Holness said:

“I have received a preliminary briefing from the Minister of Health, Dr Christopher Tufton, on the tragic circumstances surrounding the death of a mother after giving birth.

“My heart goes out to the family and loved ones of young Jodian Fearon.

“Indeed, the entire nation is rightfully disturbed, alarmed and saddened by the reports in the media so far. 

“The Government of Jamaica will offer all necessary support to the family at this critical time.

“In that regard, Minister Tufton has assured me that a thorough investigation of the matter has been undertaken, including a review of all established protocols in and between the public and private healthcare systems to identify any possible general system weaknesses or specific operational breakdowns in the handling of this case.

“We are aware that the COVID19 epidemic is placing additional strain on our resources and increasingly complicating our response systems and daily lives. However, as a people, we must never allow the epidemic to cause us to lose sight of our humanity.”

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