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Manitoba girl's death after minor operation due to infection: medical examiner

03/28/2013 04:32 EDT | Updated 05/28/2013 05:12 EDT
WINNIPEG - Manitoba's chief medical examiner says the death of a 10-year-old girl after minor surgery was an accident.

Ashuza Halisi died March 13 after the operation at Maples Surgical Centre two days earlier.

The medical examiner says Ashuza died of an infection from a bowel that was punctured during a procedure to fix an umbilical hernia.

He is not calling an inquest into her death, but suggested a pediatric doctor review the surgery and the post-operative care the girl received.

The Winnipeg Regional Health Authority has already responded with plans to retain someone from outside the province.

"We know this has been a very trying time for the Halisi family," Dr. Brock Wright, senior vice-president at the health authority, said in a release Thursday.

"We are working with Maples Clinic to see what improvements can be made as a result of this case."

Wright said discharge instructions provided to families following day surgery are already being reviewed and followup calls are being made within 24 hours rather than 48 hours.

Ashuza's family members have said their main concern is that the same thing doesn't happen to someone else.

The operation only took about 20 minutes, but when the family got home with the girl she kept complaining about pain.

Her condition got worse the next day and she had trouble breathing.

Her mother called 911 and started CPR, but it was too late.

Ashuza's father, who was in Africa on business at the time, said his daughter was a "special girl."

He said he will never forget the 18-hour flight he took back to Winnipeg.

"I kept covering myself with those blankets they provide on flights because I wanted to hide my tears.''

(CJOB, The Canadian Press)

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