A coronial inquest into the death of a Sunshine Coast infant will consider whether electronic baby monitors could prevent similar tragedies.
A coronial inquest into the death of a five month old infant will hear expert opinion about whether electronic baby monitors should be mandated in day care facilities.
Emma Hicks dropped her baby daughter Indianna off at the home of Tracey Cross, who provided services for the Sunshine Coast family day care scheme, on the morning of July 20, 2012.
A pre-inquest hearing in Brisbane on Tuesday was told Ms Cross placed Indianna on her back to sleep around 1pm that day and the baby girl had showed no behaviours which caused concern.
Ms Cross checked on her throughout the next hour or so. But some time between 2.15 and 2.30pm she walked over to the cot to find Indianna on her stomach.
“Ms Cross noticed that Indianna was lying face down and her skin was pale,” counsel assisting the coroner Emily Cooper told the court.
The child did not respond to attempts to resuscitate her and was pronounced dead in the Caloundra Hospital that afternoon.
Ms Cooper said a full autopsy report found no skeletal abnormalities, nor evidence of previous injury.
It was possible that Indianna had freed her arms from the rug she was wrapped in and “rolled over onto her stomach, thus putting herself into a dangerous position for sleeping,” Ms Cooper said.
The inquest will be handed a report from Professor Jeanine Young, of the national scientific advisory group SIDS and Kids.
Professor Young will detail the best sleeping practices for infants aged 3-6 months.
She will also discuss electronic baby monitors “and whether the use of electronic baby monitors should be considered as a mandatory requirement for family daycare facilities,” Ms Cooper told the coroner.
Indianna’s father Derek and his sister Sarah attended the hearing.
Coroner John Lock told Mr Hicks that he hoped the inquest will provide some answers.
“I can’t promise that everything will (be) resolved in relation to those matters,” the coroner said.
“But I’m certainly confident that something will come out of these tragic circumstances.”
The inquest is set down for three days in early November.