I talked to the state’s social worker on Monday about finding out the status of Luke’s autopsy report and whether we could get a written copy instead of just a phone call. I hadn’t heard back, so I emailed her for an update. She called back and said that an autopsy had been declined because my daughter’s death at 38 weeks had been considered natural.
Zack and I lost it.
We requested an autopsy, I told her. I signed paperwork authorizing it. I had a son, not a daughter. And I was 37 weeks, not 38. Are you sure you even pulled the right case, I asked her? I’m freaking out right now, I said.
She apologized and said I should speak directly to her organization’s executive director. She gave me the phone number. I called right away and left a message explaining the situation and telling her that I was highly distraught. Within a few minutes, the woman called back. She asked me a few questions and then explained that it was the state medical examiner’s office that didn’t do an autopsy, that they defer to local hospitals in such cases, and that the hospital would have conducted the autopsy. She said the hospital is probably still waiting for lab tests to come back and that is the likely reason for the delay.
Well, Jesus. I wish the social worker had been better informed of how these things work. Isn’t that her job? She could have bypassed the medical examiner’s office and gone straight to the hospital to begin with—preventing us all this heartache in the meantime.
The executive director then offered to make some calls on Monday and try to find out more about the status. She kept getting the name of the hospital wrong, but we finally squared it away. (Franklin Square Hospital? Frederick Square Hospital? Oh, Frederick Memorial Hospital? Got it).
So, that’s where we are now.