Girl, 5, dies of asthma attack after GP turned her away

The family of a five-year-old girl who died of an asthma attack just hours after being turned away by a GP for being late to an emergency appointment, are speaking out after it emerged that the doctor involved received only a written warning.

Ellie-May Clark's family say their "lives have been left shattered" following the schoolgirl's death in January 2015, just five hours after Dr Joanne Rowe told her and her mother to return the following day as they were eight minutes late.

Brandi Clark, Ellie-May's grandmother branded the doctor's actions "disgusting" and questioned why Dr Rowe was still a GP, now working in Cardiff.

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Calls to end secret GMC disciplinary hearings after girl dies of asthma attack

The Welsh Conservatives are calling for ‘fundamental reform’ of the way the General Medical Council handles disciplinary and negligence cases.

Ellie-May Clark's family says their 'lives have been left shattered' following her death. Credit: Family photo

They say the GMC must prove that it represents the interests of everyone, and not just “its own”.

The calls come after the death of Ellie-May Clark, who died after her GP refused to treat her because she was late to an emergency appointment.

Leader of the Welsh Conservatives, Andrew RT Davies, raised the issue this afternoon with Jane Hutt AM who was standing in for Carwyn Jones during First Minister’s Questions.

Read more here Girl, five, dies of asthma attack after GP turned her away for being eight minutes late

The way in which complaints such as this are handled needs urgent reform, and it’s an absolute disgrace that hearings of this kind can be held behind closed doors.

The system is not fit for purpose.

The GMC is there to look after everyone, not just its own, and I’m disappointed that the Welsh Government hasn’t come forward to condemn this practice.

It took a national newspaper to bring this tragedy into the public eye, and the public will be looking to the First Minister and his government to press the GMC for fundamental reform.

– Leader of the Welsh Conservatives, Andrew RT Davies


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