Baby Peter doctor sues for unfair dismissal

A doctor who was sacked after failing to recognise that Baby Peter had a broken back is to sue for unfair dismissal.

Sabah Al-Zayyat, a former paediatric consultant at Great Ormond Street Hospital, was the first person to be sacked after the scandal was revealed and is now suing the hospital, claiming she was made a scapegoat for wider failings.

The doctor conducted a medical examination on Baby Peter two days before he died but said she missed his injuries because he was “miserable and cranky”.

Al-Zayyat is expected to claim she was never shown the 17-month old child’s full medical history and so did not realise he was a long-term victim of abuse.

A Great Ormond Street spokesman said the hospital would “vigorously defend its position”, and denied scapegoating Al-Zayat.

An official report recently found the hospital had failed to employ enough consultants to run the clinic. Al-Zayyat’s case is expected to focus on the shortage of doctors, which put her under pressure.

Haringey’s director of children’s services, Sharon Shoesmith, and three social workers are also taking legal action after losing their jobs.

Shoesmith, who was sacked because of failings exposed by the case, is claiming unfair dismissal.

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