A FATHER has paid tribute to his daughter who died after contracting hepatitis and Covid-19 while awaiting a liver transplant.
Katie Horne died in April 2020 after first visiting the Princess Royal Hospital on Haywards Heath suffering from jaundice, dark urine, fatigue and convulsions.
The 21-year-old was transferred to King’s College Hospital in London for a liver transplant but tested positive for Covid-19, preventing her from receiving a transplant.
Coroner Andrew Harris said the combination of liver failure, the impact of the pandemic on hospitals and Katie contracting Covid-19 led to her death.
During an inquest at Inner London South Coroner’s Court on Wednesday, he said there was “no evidence” that any of the hospitals provided inadequate care, but raised concerns about the delay in getting the results and involving a gastroenterologist in their treatment .
Katie, a kindergarten teacher, attended Downlands Community School, Hassocks, and then Central Sussex College, Crawley. There she studied undergraduate studies in the field of early education and child care.
After the verdict, her father Tony Horne said: “It took two years and four months to get here.
Katie was just starting her life, she was 21 years old. She just started a new job, she loved her position.
“The kindergarten loved her, the kids loved her. That was taken away. That hurts us the most.
“We always felt like things were missing. We just want people to learn the lessons so nobody else is in that position again.”
During the inquest, the court heard that Katie, who had a family history of autoimmune diseases, had a delay in receiving her blood test results to determine what type of hepatitis she had due to a “backlog” at the lab due to the pandemic.
Counselor Tatyana Viner, who saw Katie with symptoms two days after she was first presented to the hospital on March 1, told the inquest that gastroenterologists were not on site when she first visited the hospital.
When asked if Ms Viner was following the lab results when Katie saw her on March 3, she said she assumed a young doctor would have done so.
When asked why she didn’t, she replied, “I’ve been busy.”
Katie returned to the hospital twice more before receiving her results and then met with gastroenterologist Dr. Nick Parnell after she went to the hospital for the first time.
When asked by the coroner why the gastroenterologist was not approached, Dr. Parnell: “I don’t know why her advice wasn’t sought.”
On March 18, Katie was admitted to the Princess Royal as an inpatient and began treatment on steroids on March 20.
The investigation found that when Dr. Parnell could have started treatment 10 days earlier than she did if she had been involved earlier.
Katie was transferred to King’s College Hospital on March 24 and treated by Dr. Varuna Aluvihare supervised.
But she tested positive for Covid-19 four days later – which was contracted before she was admitted – meaning she was no longer eligible for a transplant.
Katie was then transferred to intensive care on April 5 and died on April 11.
Both Dr. Parnell and Dr. Aluvihare agreed earlier treatment would have had a “better outcome,” but they couldn’t say if she would have survived.
https://www.theargus.co.uk/news/20622058.fathers-tribute-daughter-died-waiting-liver-transplant/?ref=rss Father’s tribute to daughter who died while awaiting liver transplant