Barking GP sends baby home with meningitis

A doctor is under investigation after allegedly telling a mum her baby was teething hours before he was diagnosed with meningitis.

Six-month-old Archie �McCoy nearly died in hospital after his parents claim a Barking locum misdiagnosed a swollen growth on the baby’s head which was the size of an egg.

Distraught mum Abbie Parsons, 20, claimed the GP failed to check his “sky high” temperature then told her he was teething when the boy raised his hand to his mouth.


She did not believe him and took the crying baby to Queen’s Hospital A&E where he was found to have meningitis six hours later.

Abbie, of Maplestead Road, Dagenham, said: “I was very upset and really shocked and it made me sick.

“I didn’t stop crying for a few weeks.”

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Archie spent days in intensive care at St Mary’s Hospital in Paddington after he apparently failed to respond to drugs, leading to a �dramatic fall in his heartbeat.

He has now recovered but will need to take regular hearing tests after his two-week ordeal in May this year.

The surgery where �Archie was seen has stopped using the locum.

Archie’s family are planning to sue and are preparing to lodge an official complaint at the John Smith medical centre in Bevan �Avenue, Barking, where the diagnosis was made in front of the boy’s dad, Tarren �McCoy, on May 24.

Abbie said: “Archie raised his hand to his mouth when the doctor said he was teething. The doctor didn’t even take his temperature or anything.

“It really breaks my heart.”

A spokesman for NHS Outer North East London said: “A complaint has been received about a locum GP temporarily employed by John Smith Medical Centre.

“Practices only employ GP locums who appear on the General Medical Council GP register.

“Due to the seriousness of this complaint all bookings with the locum agency �concerned were immediately cancelled pending a full review and investigation.”