A coronial inquest into the 2016 death of popular Gunnedah rugby player Alex Costello has concluded in Gunnedah Coroner’s Court.
Coroner Les Mabbut told the court on Wednesday he would examine all the evidence presented during the three-day inquest.
“I have arranged to hand down my findings via video-link on November 9,” Mr Mabbut said.
“The objective of this coronial inquest is to find a cause and manner of Mr Costello’s death and to try and provide answers to Mr Costello’s family.
“I will consider everything I have heard and my findings will be made available after I hand them down on November 9.
“I thank the court for its co-operation and participation throughout this inquest.”
The sudden death of the then 37-year-old was investigated after Mr Costello died suddenly on April 9, 2016, after suffering chest pains.
In closing arguments, the legal representative for Hunter New England Health urged the court to “strongly consider” the evidence given by emergency care specialist Anna Holdgate.
“I would urge Your Honour to accept the reliable evidence of Professor Holdgate,” she said.
“The evidence given by Professor Holdgate outlined the challenges of being a general practitioner in a rural hospital and I urge Your Honour to consider her evidence.”
Professor Holdgate told the court on Tuesday, that the aortic dissection that claimed Mr Costello’s life would have been difficult for doctors to detect.
“The reason there is so much written about them (aortic dissections) is because they are difficult to diagnose and are often missed,” Professor Holdgate said.
“They’re always severe.
“In my career I would have seen a couple of dozen.”
Mr Mabbut will determine a number of factors in his findings, including if medical procedures were followed correctly and if the right decision was made in regards to not transferring Mr Costello to Tamworth hospital.
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