A nine-year-old boy died just days after being discharged from hospital with what doctors described as an insect bite.

Now the family of tragic Austin O'Dowd are demanding answers after he battled mysterious symptoms for nearly a year.

The schoolboy was in and out of A&E before he died, and had suffered a swollen eye just days before his death.

An investigation by police and health chiefs has been launched after the boy’s death.

His dad Vincent, 64, says Basildon Hospital, in Essex, is responsible and said he is pursuing legal action.


The Tilbury, in Essex, man said: “I think the hospital has blood on its hands.

“This is a teaching hospital this isn’t just a general hospital, I have no idea what they are telling doctors in there.

“They haven’t even been in touch with me, I just need answers, I want to understand what has gone in there.

“It seems to me like a complete death hospital, it doesn’t surprise me if you come out dead.

“It has hit everyone hard in the family, and there were lots of people crying at his school and there was so many people at his funeral.

“He was so well liked, it was like everyone he came into contact with he touched.

“The ironic thing is he wanted to become a doctor.”

Mr O’Dowd said his son was first taken to hospital on October 30 last year with stomach pains and returned 12 times before his death.

In the weeks before he died at home the symptoms worsened with the keen dancer suffering from vomiting and diarrhoea.


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