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Nasar Ahmed died after struggling for breath in detention

  • Nasar Ahmed was in exclusion room with other pupils when he became unwell
  • Taken to hospital and put on oxygen but brain scan showed him unresponsive
  • First aider and other staff tried to save Nasar as condition quickly deteriorated 
  • Staff could have used medical supplies to help Nasar before paramedics arrived

By Mark Duell for MailOnline

Published: 09:58 EDT, 5 May 2017 | Updated: 11:54 EDT, 5 May 2017

Nasar Ahmed, 14, was in an exclusion room with other pupils when he became unwell
Nasar Ahmed, 14, was in an exclusion room with other pupils when he became unwell

Nasar Ahmed, 14, was in an exclusion room with other pupils when he became unwell

A teenage boy who died after falling ill during a school detention had eaten a meal he was allergic to just hours before he collapsed, an inquest heard.

Nasar Ahmed, 14, was in an exclusion room with other pupils at Bow School in East London when he became unwell.

The boy, who had eaten a tandoori chicken lunch containing milk, was taken to hospital and put on oxygen but a brain scan showed he was unresponsive - and he died four days later.

The inquest at Poplar Coroner's Court heard staff tried to save Nasar as his condition quickly deteriorated, with first aider Cherie Hyde putting him in the recovery position and searching for a pulse as he struggled for breath.

Another staff member brought Nasar's personal first aid box, which contained an inhaler and EpiPen he needed for his asthma and allergies, while PE teacher Gemma Anderson was on the phone to the emergency services for advice.

The inquest heard there was a five-minute window before paramedics arrived on November 10 last year in which staff could have used the vital medical supplies to help Nasar - but they were not given to him.

Ferdousi Zaman (left) and Ashrafuz Zaman (right), mother and father of Nasar, stand outside Poplar Coroner's Court in East London on Tuesday
Ferdousi Zaman (left) and Ashrafuz Zaman (right), mother and father of Nasar, stand outside Poplar Coroner's Court in East London on Tuesday

Ferdousi Zaman (left) and Ashrafuz Zaman (right), mother and father of Nasar, stand outside Poplar Coroner's Court in East London on Tuesday

Ms Hyde told the hearing Nasar was not breathing well enough for her to administer the inhaler, and was focused on his asthma rather than the allergies and the need for his EpiPen, after he told her, "Miss, I can't find my pump".

Coroner Mary Hassell repeatedly questioned Ms Hyde over why neither was used when they were readily available in Nasar's box, and why she had not specifically asked other staff to get his inhaler.

Ms Hassell said: 'I am not saying it would have changed the outcome, but in terms of best practice if you had said, "He has told me he is looking for his asthma pump", then there may have been a different conversation with members of staff on the phone to the paramedics, and not focused on the EpiPen.

'There would have been an opportunity for the paramedic to know that the boy was looking for his asthma pump.'

Ms Hyde conceded that with hindsight she may have asked for the inhaler, but said: 'Everything he needed was in that pack.'

Year Nine pupil Nasar had asthma, severe eczema and a host of allergies, including to milk, fish, nuts, wheat, some meats, apples and oranges. He died on November 14.

Nasar's parents Ashrafuz and Ferdousi Zaman, attending the inquest, heard that a school cook told headteacher Daniel Lye their son had eaten a tandoori chicken lunch containing milk at 12.20pm, around two hours before he collapsed.

Nasar  became unwell and collapsed on November 10 last year. He was rushed to hospital and given oxygen but a brain scan showed he was unresponsive and he died on November 14
Nasar  became unwell and collapsed on November 10 last year. He was rushed to hospital and given oxygen but a brain scan showed he was unresponsive and he died on November 14

Nasar became unwell and collapsed on November 10 last year. He was rushed to hospital and given oxygen but a brain scan showed he was unresponsive and he died on November 14

But pathologist Dr Liina Palm said she could not ascertain from the post-mortem examination whether Nasar died from an asthma attack or an allergic reaction.

Dr Palm told the inquest she found blood cells in his body which are associated with an allergic reaction, and gave a cause of death as bronchial asthma that led to a hypoxic ischaemic brain injury, with multiple allergies as a contributing factor.

Bow School administration assistant Emily Keith-Young told the inquest how she rushed down to the detention room with Nasar's medical box after being called while in reception.

The court heard that learning assistant Siobhan Newman, who was on duty in the exclusion room, had already come up asking for an inhaler, but could not remember Nasar's name, so had to go back to find it out.

Ms Keith-Young described how she arrived to find Ms Hyde kneeling over Nasar, who was in the recovery position, and Ms Anderson on the phone to emergency services.

She read out his allergy care plan so the staff could check Nasar's symptoms - but not the action plan - and said his condition was too bad for them to use the inhaler as he was struggling to breathe.

She said: 'Cherie was trying to find Nasar's pulse. I remember, I think it was Cherie, asking 'should we give the EpiPen?'. She asked, but we didn't get an answer (from the 999 call handler).

Nasar was a Year Nine pupil at Bow School in East London. He had asthma, severe eczema and a host of allergies, including to milk, fish, nuts, wheat, some meats, apples and oranges
Nasar was a Year Nine pupil at Bow School in East London. He had asthma, severe eczema and a host of allergies, including to milk, fish, nuts, wheat, some meats, apples and oranges

Nasar was a Year Nine pupil at Bow School in East London. He had asthma, severe eczema and a host of allergies, including to milk, fish, nuts, wheat, some meats, apples and oranges

'I don't know how we could administer the inhaler because of the condition he was in. He was blue. To have the inhaler you would have needed to inhale and it just seemed too late by then to help him to have the pump.'

Asked by Ms Hassell if it was too late to give the inhaler, she replied: 'It was too late, it was too far gone. He wouldn't have been able to have a (antihistamine) tablet or inhale his pump.'

The inquest had previously heard that Nasar's allergy plan had been mistakenly downgraded from severe to mild to moderate, and did not include specific instructions on when to use the EpiPen.

Ms Keith-Young said: 'The action plan didn't say to give the EpiPen but to call 999. That had already happened by the time I got into the room.'

Ms Hassell asked her: 'Do you think you would have said to Ms Hyde and Ms Anderson, if there were signs of anaphylaxis, "Give him the EpiPen"?'

Ms Keith-Young replied: 'If that is what it said, then yes.'

Paul Spencer, counsel for the school's care planning provider, Compass Wellbeing, suggested to her that 'not a lot' was being done during the five minutes before paramedics arrived.

But Ms Keith-Young said she and Ms Hyde had both mentioned giving CPR to Nasar, but he was still breathing. The inquest continues. 

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