Queensland Hospital Gives Newborn Baby Wrong Milk; Infant Tested for Possible HIV

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By Reissa Su | June 23, 2014 4:26 PM EST

A newborn baby is being tested for HIV after getting breast milk from the wrong mother in Australia. The Metro North Health Service has launched an investigation in Queensland's Caboolture Hospital to find out more about the incident on June 18.

REUTERS/Stringer
A nurse takes care of a premature newborn baby inside an incubator at a hospital in Changsha, Hunan province. Picture taken October 30, 2013.

Reports said authorities have indicated that the three-week-old baby had "little chance" of contracting HIV due to the good health of all those involved. However, the health agency said milk and blood samples were being tested as a precautionary measure.

The test results are expected in about a week, according to reports. The AAP report said a routine confirmation test will be conducted in 12 weeks.

The names of the people involved in the incident were not release for privacy purposes.

A Metro North spokesman had directly apologised to the parents of the newborn baby and the breast milk donor for the incident.

In a Sunshine Coast Daily report, the baby's grandmother, who asked to be called Peggy, called Brisbane's talk back radio and said her grandson was being tested for HIV, Hepatitis A, B and C. She told the show that her son and daughter-in-law were worried about their baby's health.

Peggy criticised the hospital and asked "who's not doing their job?" According to her, a hospital nurse had given a bottle of breast milk to her daughter-in-law to feed her baby. The nurse returned a few minutes later and said it was the wrong bottle.

On June 23, Caboolture Hospital acting Executive Director Keith Love revealed on 4BC radio that the breast milk mistakenly given to the baby came from a "healthy" mother and not from an HIV patient. Love said the parents had not been informed of the latest results, but he will be doing so as soon as possible.

The host of the radio talk show asked Love to call the family since they have been waiting for news and kept him on hold.

The health service representative said the results of the investigation will be evaluated to ensure a similar incident will not happen. He said the hospital staff involved had received counseling. 

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(Photo: REUTERS/Stringer / )
A nurse takes care of a premature newborn baby inside an incubator at a hospital in Changsha, Hunan province. Picture taken October 30, 2013.
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