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Mummified Boy: Social Workers Raised Concerns
Social services and doctors had raised concerns about a boy whose mummified body was found almost two years after he died, the jury at the trial of his mother has heard.
Bradford Crown Court was told that the police, social services, health visitors, a school and Hamzah Khan's GP practice were discussing concerns about him both before and after he died.
Paediatrician Dr Kathryn Ward told the jury Hamzah and his mother Amanda Hutton were the subject of multi-agency meetings in 2009 and 2010 because of child protection concerns.
Hutton is accused of the manslaughter of her four-and-a-half-year-old son in December 2009.
She pleaded guilty to child neglect in July, the jury heard.
Hamzah's body was discovered in the cot in his mother's bedroom in September 2011.
He was so small he was wearing clothes designed for a six to nine-month-old baby.
Dr Ward said records showed Hamzah had never visited his GP, who, despite professional concerns about his welfare, struck him and his mother off the practice list in October 2009.
"Apparently, and I quote from the records: 'Because there had been too many failed appointments'," she said.
Hamzah died two months later, having last been seen by a health visitor in July 2005.
Dr Ward said research shows that non engagement with health professionals is a "serious risk" indicator "where child protection concerns emerge".
Dr Ward said GPs striking children off lists causes concern. "It causes children to sink even further below the radar," she explained.
Social workers first became concerned about Hamzah's safety in November 2006 and the school he should have attended was alerted to his absence by health visitors in 2009 and 2010.
So called Multi Agency Risk Assessment Conferences, or Maracs, were held to discuss child safety because of Hutton's lack of engagement with professionals, her alcoholism and the domestic violence she suffered.
Dr Ward said: "From two weeks of age, we know nothing about this child
"His personal development, behaviour, his personality or general health.
"It's a blank page.
"The picture of non-engagement and failure to respond to professionals from a variety of areas is a matter of great concern."
Hutton denies manslaughter, telling police after her arrest that Hamzah had died from natural causes.
But Dr Ward told the jury: "I have no doubt that malnutrition was a significant factor and indeed the root cause of the child's death."
The jury was told Tariq Khan, Hamzah's 24-year-old brother, has pleaded guilty to preventing the burial of a corpse.