‘Nothing will bring our little girl back...but we want the truth, we want justice for Jade’.
The poignant, heartbreaking words of a mother who lost her daughter in the most tragic of circumstances.
I hope that we get the truth. I know nothing will bring her back but people need to be made more aware of what has happened so it never happens again
Ten-year-old Jade Norton, who was severely disabled, tumbled out of bed in June 2011 when a side rail gave way and was suffocated after plastic sheets fell on top of her.
Her family had asked four times for a fault with the £2,600 bed to be fixed or for it to be replaced. But nothing was done.
It was only three years after the tragedy that health bosses last year apologised to Jade’s grieving parents and paid undisclosed compensation as part of a civil case.
But yesterday criminal proceedings were launched by the Health and Safety Authority against NHS Litigation Limited and Jade’s carers, Interserve Healthcare.
And Jade’s heartbroken mother Amanda has today demanded justice for her daughter after the tragedy.
The 42-year-old, of Eaton Avenue, South Shore, told The Gazette: “At the end of the day an innocent girl had died. She would still be here if it was not for the faults.
“I hope that we get the truth. I know nothing will bring her back but people need to be made more aware of what has happened so it never happens again.
“It is justice for Jade. My little girl has lost her life – I do not want it to happen to anyone again.”
Jade suffered from Rett’s Syndrome, a rare disorder which impacts on breathing and movement.
She was provided with a BaKare Klearside bed to stop her rolling out at night if she suffered a seizure at home.
Dad Lee and his wife Amanda noticed the bed’s barrier had become faulty but their complaints were ignored.
Days before her 11th birthday Jade suffered a seizure and fell out of bed, with her parents finding her on the floor.
Jade’s dad Lee, 41, said: “I thought she was asleep – but I noticed she was blue. I just howled.”
Amanda added: “Lee screamed. I started CPR to try to resuscitate her while Lee rang for an ambulance. I would hate to go through it again.”
Lee added: “I would not wish it on anyone.”
After her death civil proceedings started with the family awarded compensation by the NHS Commissioning Board.
But proceedings have now been issued against NHS Litigation Ltd in London as well as Interserve Healthcare.
The NHS faces one allegation of failing in its duty of care to Jade in relation to the supply of a prescription bed at her home.
Care provision company Interserve Health Care – formerly known as Advantage Health Care – faces two allegations of exposing Jade to risk through their delivery of nursing and personal care to Jade.
Blackpool magistrates yesterday adjourned the hearing to a date to be fixed and ruled it must be heard by a District Judge.
Solicitor Jennifer Maloney of Slater Gordon confirmed the civil settlement had been agreed and an apology received by the family.
A letter to the family from Richard Jones, of NHS England, said: “I do appreciate that no apology I can make will be adequate in these circumstances, but I am truly sorry.”
NHS Litigation Ltd and Interserve Healthcare declined to comment.