A toddler died while his gran was reading Mr Men books to him after his crucial surgery was repeatedly delayed because no beds were available, an inquest heard.

Kayden Urmston-Bancroft passed away at 20 months old surrounded by his family as his grandmother read to him.

The little boy went into cardiac arrest after waiting at ‘extremely busy’ Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital (RMCH) for three days.

The inquest heard he required an ‘urgent’ procedure at Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital but it kept being ‘put off’, the coroner was told.

Kayden was born with a diaphragmatic hernia, but it was only discovered when the youngster was taken to Stepping Hill Hospital after falling from a bed and banging his face in April 2016.

An X-ray showed that part of his bowel had burst through the hole in his diaphragm and he was transferred to Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital (RMCH) for urgent surgery, reports the Manchester Evening News .

But three days later, the youngster was still waiting for surgery and went into cardiac arrest.

Kayden, from Stockport, was rushed to theatre, but tragically never regained consciousness and died shortly afterwards.

An inquest into his death at Manchester Coroner’s Court on Monday heard that Kayden’s surgery had been repeatedly delayed because there were no beds available on the children’s High Dependency Unit (HDU).

One senior consultant described the children’s hospital as ‘extremely busy’ during the little boy’s treatment.

His grandmother Julie Rowlands said she and Kayden’s mum Shannon Bancroft had expected him to have immediate surgery after being transferred to RMCH from Stepping on Tuesday, April 12, 2016.

“We were under the impression he would be transferred to the children’s hospital and have the operation straight away,” Ms Rowlands told the court on Monday.

“We thought they were ready to do it. When we arrived we were put in a room and the F1s were saying a car crash victim had come in.

“By Wednesday Kayden was still in pain so I rang Stepping Hill saying they had still not done it.”

She added: “It was just put off day by day.”

His mother Shannon Bancroft, in a statement read out in court, described the signs of pain and discomfort her son showed while in hospital.

She said on the Thursday, Kayden was ‘still screaming and seemed to be in a lot pain’.

“We were told the only reason for the delay was the lack of beds and that was what we were waiting for,” Ms Bancroft’s statement read.

On the Friday evening, Ms Bancroft said Kayden still would not settle. Sensing something was wrong, the mum called the nurses to check on her son.

She noticed he was pale and that his lips had started to turn blue. Kayden then went into cardiac arrest.

Doctors and nurses resuscitated Kayden for just under half an hour while his distraught mother looked on.

“I called my mum in hysterics and then went back into the room. I dropped to the floor and had to be taken out again.”

Kayden regained a pulse and was rushed to theatre for his operation. He was taken to the intensive care unit but sadly never regained consciousness.

“After the operation the surgeon came back into the room and said as a hospital they had failed my little boy,” Ms Bancroft added.

“My mother asked them if Kayden would be disabled and their response was he was not going to make it.”

Ms Bancroft made the heartbreaking decision to turn off her son’s life-support machine on Sunday, April 17, 2016.

The little boy died surrounded by his family with his grandmother reading Mr Men stories to him.

A pathology report accepted as evidence in court concluded Kayden had died of natural causes linked to acute inflammation of the pericardial sack, peritonitis and stomach perforation.

The court heard coroner Angharad Davies question who was responsible at the hospital for booking beds on the high dependency unit ahead of surgery.

Mr Mohamed Shoukry, a locum consultant surgeon who treated Kayden that week, said he had not been aware of the hospital’s policy on making beds available.

Mr Shoukry first saw Kayden on the Tuesday and had offered to carry out Kayden’s surgery if there was a cancellation on his elective list on the Thursday.

In the meantime, Kayden had been placed on a list of patients requiring urgent surgery and was left under the care of the on-call consultant surgeon, Mr Shoukry, told the court.

Mr Shoukry said he believed it would have been the on-call team who would have booked a bed in HDU for Kayden.

He said: “My understanding is that the on-call team doing emergency surgery will decide which patient is (a) priority according to ongoing processes.”

When Mr Shoukry returned to the hospital on Thursday, the on-call consultant surgeon carrying out emergency surgery that day had called in sick.

He claimed to have had a conversation with a colleague about cancelling one of his elective patients to carry out Kayden’s surgery either that morning, afternoon or after hours.

Yet Kayden’s surgery was never carried out that day.

Mr Shoukry described the paediatric theatre as ‘exceptionally busy’, and that he had not been aware that a fresh request for an HDU bed needed to be made each day.

When questioned by Stephen Clarkson, of Slater and Gordon representing the family, Mr Shoukry said: “No one had told me about this policy. Anyone on the on-call team could book a bed.”


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