• New South Wales Health have acknowledged they could have done more to help the young patient. (Supplied)Source: Supplied
A coronial inquest into the death of Naomi Williams and her unborn child has begun.
Rachael Hocking

17 Sep 2018 - 11:55 AM  UPDATED 17 Sep 2018 - 11:55 AM

Ms Williams, a 27-year-old Wiradjuri woman, was six months pregnant when she presented to Tumut District Hospital in the early hours of January 1, 2016 with a severe headache.

Hospital staff gave her two paracetamol tablets and an iceblock then sent her home. She died 14 hours later as a result of meningococcal and septicemia, according to the autopsy report.

Ms Williams had presented at Tumut Hospital with stomach pains on a number of occasions in 2015 but was repeatedly referred to Drug and Alcohol and Mental Health services, instead of a specialist. 

The coronial inquest will examine the care Ms Williams received when she arrived at Tumut Hospital and the extent to which systemic failures may have contributed to her death. 

George Newhouse, principal solicitor of the National Justice Project, is acting for Ms Williams’ family at the inquest. 

"Her death raises questions about the standard of care at the hospital and whether prejudice may have played a part in her death," he said. 

“Naomi’s mum, Sharon, lost her only child and grandchild that day; her partner lost the love of his life and their unborn baby."

“They don’t want Naomi’s death to be in vain. They want lessons to be learned and reforms to be made to the health care system."

Grieving family still searching for answers after young woman’s death
To lose a child is arguably the most painful experience one could ever face in life, and something no parent should have to endure.

In 2016, Ms Williams mother Sharon wrote to the NSW Minister for Health Jillian Skinner demanding answers. 

“What caused her to have a massive heart attack and die so young? Was it neglect on behalf of doctors and staff?  These are questions we require answers to," she wrote. 

The inquest is expected to continue in Sydney in 2019.