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Page last updated at 12:48 GMT, Friday, 29 August 2008 13:48 UK

Mothers' anguish over baby mix-up

Lebo Nkadimeng (Photo from The Sowetan - www.sowetan.co.za)
Ms Nkadimeng says she cannot grieve yet (Pic: The Sowetan)

Two mothers in South Africa are waiting for DNA results after their newborn babies were mixed up and one of them subsequently died, local media reports.

After they gave birth at the Alexandra Clinic on Sunday, nurses allegedly forgot to tag the infants' wrists.

The women were each given a child and told to return later for results, but one of the baby girls died on Tuesday.

Alexandra Clinic told the BBC it was investigating the reported death and could not comment on the circumstances.

I am torn between grief of losing a child and the thought of explaining to the other woman how her child died, if its hers," Lebo Nkadimeng, the mother in whose care the baby died, told South Africa's Sowetan newspaper.

"I cannot even mourn the babys death because I am not sure if she was mine, she said.

According to Johannesburg's Talk 702 radio station, the Gauteng provincial Health Department is to meet the clinic's management about the case.

The chief operations officer at the clininc, Dr Muvili Simba, is quoted in the Sowetan as saying the other mother has been told about the baby's death.

We visited her at home with a social worker and a doctor. She was informed about the death of the other baby. The social worker counselled her and explained what to expect when the DNA results come back, he said.


SEE ALSO
Country profile: South Africa
31 May 08 |  Country profiles

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