Boy died at Bow School hours after eating a meal he was allergic to, inquest told
PUBLISHED: 15:55 05 May 2017 | UPDATED: 15:55 05 May 2017
A teenage boy who died after falling ill during a detention at Bow School had eaten a meal he was allergic to just hours before he collapsed, an inquest heard.
Nasar Ahmed was in an exclusion room with other pupils when he became unwell on November 10 last year.
He was taken to hospital and put on oxygen but a brain scan showed the 14-year-old was unresponsive, and he died on November 14.
The inquest at Poplar Coroner’s Court heard staff tried to save Nasar as his condition quickly deteriorated, with first aider Cherie Hyde putting him in the recovery position and searching for a pulse as he struggled for breath.
Another staff member brought Nasar’s personal first aid box, which contained an inhaler and EpiPen he needed for his asthma and allergies, while PE teacher Gemma Anderson was on the phone to the emergency services asking for advice.
The inquest heard there was a five-minute window before paramedics arrived in which staff could have used the vital medical supplies to help Nasar - but they were not given to him.
Ms Hyde told the hearing Nasar was not breathing well enough for her to administer the inhaler, and was focused on his asthma rather than the allergies and the need for his EpiPen, after he told her, “Miss, I can’t find my pump.”
Coroner Mary Hassell repeatedly questioned Ms Hyde over why neither was used when they were readily available in Nasar’s box, and why she had not specifically asked other staff to get his inhaler.
Ms Hassell said: “I am not saying it would have changed the outcome, but in terms of best practice if you had said, ‘He has told me he is looking for his asthma pump’, then there may have been a different conversation with members of staff on the phone to the paramedics, and not focused on the EpiPen.
“There would have been an opportunity for the paramedic to know that the boy was looking for his asthma pump.”
Ms Hyde conceded that with hindsight she may have asked for the inhaler, but said: “Everything he needed was in that pack.”
Nasar, a Year Nine pupil had asthma, severe eczema and a host of allergies, including to milk, fish, nuts, wheat, some meats, apples and oranges.
Nasar’s parents Ashrafuz and Ferdousi Zaman, attending the inquest, heard that a school cook told headteacher Daniel Lye their son had eaten a tandoori chicken lunch containing milk at 12.20pm, around two hours before he collapsed.
But pathologist Dr Liina Palm told the hearing she could not ascertain from the post-mortem examination whether Nasar died from an asthma attack or an allergic reaction.
Dr Palm told the inquest she found blood cells in his body which are associated with an allergic reaction, and gave a cause of death as bronchial asthma that led to a hypoxic ischaemic brain injury, with multiple allergies as a contributing factor.
The inquest continues.
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