Prosecutors are investigating medical staff for negligent homicide after this little girl died at a German dental practice, which still appears to be operating.
The fact that the unidentified practice in the town of Kronberg im Taunus in the German state of Hesse is still operating, given that one child died there and three others had to be hospitalised after being treated there, has caused some concern, with local media questioning why it is still open, given the seriousness of the allegations.
The four-year-old victim, named Emilia, whose surname was not divulged due to strict local privacy laws, died after being anaesthetised at the practice.
The incident, which is now being investigated by the Frankfurt public prosecutor’s office as a case of negligent homicide, took place in late September.
Emilia’s mother took her to the practice after she broke a tooth while playing, and the dentist found a cavity on the broken tooth, which needed treatment.
The clinic did not use the more standard sedation practice, instead opting for general anaesthesia. However, when Emilia was given the injection, her heart stopped beating.
Unsuccessful attempts to revive the child were made over several hours. Eventually, an emergency physician was called, but he later complained that he had not been alerted sooner.
After the prosecutor’s office opened its investigation into the death, it emerged that three other children had to be admitted to hospital after being treated at the practice on the same day.
Chief public prosector Nadja Niesen has since confirmed that the doctors and anaesthetist at the practice are being investigated for negligent homicide and negligent bodily harm.
The suspicion is that the death and injuries were caused by either improper treatment or a contaminated anaesthetic.
Local media reported on Tuesday, 7th December, that the clinic is still operating and have questioned why that is the case, in light of the investigation and seriousness of the allegations.