Head lice neglect sends young child into intensive care

A child was forced to go into intensive care over fears that she was going into septic shock in a severe case of lockdown neglect.

Gardai found the child at her ‘derelict-like’ home with her sister and mother with a detective telling the court that the house had “garbage all over the floor”.

Officers said that there were “no hygienic washing facilities” in the house and that the child’s “bed mattresses were soiled”.

Her condition was brought on by scabies and the “most serious case of head lice” one doctor had ever seen.

The young girl from Dublin, Ireland, who cannot be identified, was taken to hospital by Gardai according to the Child Care Law Reporting Project (CCLRP) published on Monday.

The case is one of 48 in the report which documents the impact the coronavirus pandemic is having on vulnerable children.

The doctor who treated the girl told the court that “she had scabies and the most serious case of head lice [I’ve] ever seen” adding that she was in a “very poor condition” and deteriorated even more so overnight.

The court heard: “The hospital staff feared she was entering septic shock as her blood pressure became very low and she required intravenous fluids to keep her blood pressure up.”

Gardai said the mother had been cooperating with them and assessments would continue to be carried out as her children were taken into interim care.

The director of the CCLRP, Dr Carol Coulter said the report had seen ‘severe incidents of neglect’ which had been before the courts. She said it raised the point that the prolonged closures of schools meant teachers who would normally notice the neglect were now unable to do so.


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