A hospital is issuing fresh guidelines to staff after a 14-year-old girl was given her stillborn baby in a specimen bottle and told to take it home.
The unnamed teenager began to miscarry on Monday and went to Bishop Auckland General Hospital for treatment.
She and her mother were later handed
the dead foetus in a bottle, enclosed in a plastic bag and a padded envelope.
Officials have admitted the situation should have been handled with more sensitivity.
The teenager's parents put the 11-week-old foetus in the family fridge before complaining to hospital bosses.
Hospital officials later sent a midwife and an undertaker to collect it.
A spokesman for The County Durham and Darlington Acute Hospitals Trust said: "The trust has looked into what happened, and will be issuing guidance on how to deal with a similar situation in the future.
"The patient's care in the accident and emergency department should have been managed in a more appropriate and more sensitive manner.
"Given the age of the child involved, we cannot release a more detailed statement on this issue."