Asylum seeker 'susceptible to infections'


An Iranian asylum seeker who died after developing a leg infection had a genetic condition predisposing him to infectious disease, a court has heard.

Hamid Khazaei, 24, died in Brisbane's Mater Hospital in September 2014 after developing an infected ulcer on his left leg on Manus Island.

A pre-inquest conference in Brisbane heard an autopsy report found Mr Khazaei had a genetic predisposition to a condition known as chronic granulomatous disease, which compromises the immune system and leaves the sufferer susceptible to ongoing infections.

However, the conference also heard the medical facilities on Manus Island were not equipped to treat Mr Khazaei.

A statement by a doctor at the Manus Island facility who treated Mr Khazaei described the clinic as "essentially a number of shipping containers".

The statement, by emergency physician Dr Leslie King, was read out at the conference by Doctors for Refugees lawyer Gerard Mullins.

Dr King said the Manus Island facility was unable to carry out full blood or urine tests, had a limited range of medications and antibiotics, no x-ray machine and suffered frequent power outages.

"In my opinion the clinic was not an appropriate facility in which to manage a patient who was very unwell," the statement said.

An earlier pre-inquest conference was told Mr Khazaei was transferred off the island a day after authorities recommended the urgent move.

He became comatose while being treated at a Port Moresby hospital and was pronounced brain dead when he arrived at Brisbane's Mater Hospital on September 2, 2014.

Counsel assisting the coroner Emily Cooper said a major issue would be whether the clinicians on Manus Island could have been expected to recognise the type of condition that Mr Khazaei suffered and whether anything could have realistically been done to save him.

Ms Cooper said an expert review process must be completed before the inquest progresses and another conference was set down for March 14.