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FAI to be held into death of newborn girl at Glasgow hospital

Sophia Smith died at the Royal Hospital for Children in Glasgow (Andrew Milligan/PA)
Sophia Smith died at the Royal Hospital for Children in Glasgow (Andrew Milligan/PA)

A fatal accident inquiry will be held into the death of an 11-day-old baby at a hospital which faced a police probe.

Newborn Sophia Smith died on April 11 2017 at the Royal Hospital for Children at the Queen Elizabeth University Hospital (QEUH) campus in Glasgow.

She became ill with an infection similar to MRSA, which developed into sepsis.

MSP Paul O’Kane has hit out on behalf her parents, Theresa and Matthew Smith, who live in his constituency.

He has called for resignations over delays to the Scottish Hospitals Inquiry.

Police launched an investigation into the death, alongside other fatalities at QEUH including leukaemia patient Milly Main, 10, who died after a catheter became infected when she was in remission.

In 2020, Sophia Smith’s case was handed over to the Crown Office (COPFS) and a decision was made not to bring criminal charges.

Announcing a fatal accident inquiry (FAI), a spokesperson from COPFS said this could be reversed if more evidence emerged.

The Lord Advocate, Dorothy Bain KC, decided there was a public interest into holding a FAI to examine “the full circumstances surrounding this tragic death”, after a “thorough and independent” investigation.

The Crown Office instructed police to investigate “a number” of deaths at QEUH.

No date has yet been announced for the FAI.

Procurator Fiscal Andy Shanks, who leads on fatalities investigations for COPFS, said: “The Lord Advocate has decided that a discretionary fatal accident inquiry should be held into the causes of this tragic death to ensure that there can be a full public hearing of the facts of the case.

“The procurator fiscal has now started work to initiate this inquiry and there are a number of legal steps which must be taken before it can commence.

“Sophia’s family will be kept informed of what will happen next.”