A healthcare worker in Britain has been arrested on suspicion of murdering eight babies.
The unidentified woman, who was employed at The Countess of Chester Hospital in northern England, is also suspected of trying to murder six other babies, according to police.
The woman’s arrest follows an investigation, which began in May of last year, into the hospital’s neonatal unit where 17 babies died and 15 others suffered “non-fatal collapses” between March 2015 to July 2016.
Detective Inspector Paul Hughes described the investigation as “very sensitive” and declined to give details on the healthcare worker.
“This is a highly complex and very sensitive investigation and, as you can appreciate, we need to ensure we do everything we possibly can to try to establish in detail what has led to these baby deaths and collapses,” said Hughes.
Hospital representatives have said the neonatal unit is currently “safe to continue in its current form,” adding that its staff are cooperating with detectives.
“Asking the police to look into this was not something we did lightly, but we need to do everything we can to understand what has happened here…” said Ian Harvey, the hospital’s medical director.
The healthcare worker remains in custody as police continue to investigate the matter.
“This is an extremely difficult time for all the families and it is important to remember that, at the heart of this, there are a number of bereaved families seeking answers as to what happened to their children,” Hughes said.