THE grieving mother of a teenager who died after taking ‘double-strength’ ecstasy tablets at a music festival has praised doctors who battled to save her daughter’s life – and vowed to start a national anti-drugs campaign.
Janine Milburn, 41, paid a tearful tribute to the staff at Queen Alexandra Hospital who fought valiantly to save her daughter, Georgia Jones’s, life.
The 18-year-old was one of two people to die at Mutiny Festival, in Cosham, in May 26.
Speaking to doctors from QA during the closing day of her daughter’s inquest, at Portsmouth Coroner’s Court, Ms Millburn said: ‘What you did for her was all you could do. You treated us brilliantly, all the hospital staff did. You were fantastic. I couldn’t have asked for anything more.
‘I wouldn’t have wanted her to survive with complications. She worked with people like that and wouldn’t have wanted to be that way.
‘The fact that she passed was better.’
And as the inquest concluded, Ms Millburn hugged Doctor Eliot Wilkinson, a consultant at QA who was among those to fight to save the teenager.
Earlier, the court heard how Georgia had started fitting at about 5pm after taking two ecstasy pills hours before.
The teenager’s temperature and heart rate rocketed to a ‘dangerous level’, the court heard.
Dr Rowan Jones was one of two doctors involved the festival’s in-house treatment centre, provided by Festival Medical
He said he sprinted across the site to assist medics already treating Georgia after receiving a call from his colleague, Dr Kate Mead.
He said: ‘I had not encountered a situation of this severity in my 10-plus years of working in festival medical services.
‘This was, without a doubt, unfortunately, the illest patient I have had ever met at a festival.’
Georgia was taken to a special on-site medical facility where medics battled to cool her body down and gave her drugs to try and reduce her fits.
However, after about 40 minutes of treatment, Georgia became ‘unresponsive’ and the decision was taken to call an ambulance.
She arrived at QA at about 6pm and was treated in the emergency ward.
Doctors managed to restart her heart after it stopped at 6.20pm. However, the organ continued to fail on multiple occasions, said Dr Eliot Wilkinson, a consultant at QA.
He said efforts to revive her were stopped at 7.50pm and she died shortly later.
Coroner David Horsley asked Dr Wilkinson if he had ever dealt with cases of MDMA overdose.
‘I have but nothing so serious,’ he said. ‘This is the first patient I have treated who has died from recreational drug use.’
Dr Wilkinson added he was ‘satisfied’ Georgia had received the best-possible medical treatment from his staff and those at Mutiny.
Speaking after the inquest, Ms Milburn vowed to continue her campaign, Georgia Jones Don’t Go With The Flo
It seeks to improve drug education – particularly school children – and introduce drug-testing facilities at major festivals.
‘Education is the only weapon against drugs and people dying like Gerogia did,’ she said.
‘We need to make small changes rather than saying: “Drugs are bad, you might die” – kids don’t listen to that, no-one listens to that.
‘Like we heard in court today, Georgia’s temperature went sky-high, nothing could be done to help her. Her body folded in on itself, he blood became acidic, she had multi-organ failure, brain damage – there was no coming back from any of that.
‘People don’t realise how damaging drugs can be.
‘Drugs aren’t going away. Just say no to drugs doesn’t work. This is going to be around forever, it’s been around forever and we’re going to need to take steps to improve it.’