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As reported by the Independent, Ambulance delays continue to put patients at undue risk. It is estimated that approximately 12,000 patients a year could be suffering severe harm as a result of Ambulance delays and long waits outside Accident & Emergency. It is estimated that 1 in 10 patients could suffer severe harm, such as a cardiac arrest, loss of a limb or brain damage.

The systemic problems within the health and social care system were highlighted in a report published by the Association of Ambulance Chief Executives (AACE), expressing that there is a lack of capacity and staff to meet rising patient demand.

The AACE report concluded that “unacceptable levels of preventable harm are being caused to patients”. The report also warned that these issues had been highlighted in 2012 and not enough had been done to resolve or at least reduce the issues.

If you believe that you, or a loved one, have suffered harm because of suspected clinical negligence, one of our specialist clinical negligence solicitors would be happy to speak with you and advise you as to your options, including a formal complaint and a legal claim. There is no initial charge for discussing this with us and we will talk you through your options, including how to fund a case and the possibility of a no win no fee arrangement (conditional fee agreement or CFA).”

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As reported by itv news, a woman died as a result of sepsis, signs of which had been missed by numerous health professionals during a 3-week period following an abortion.

At inquest it was found that she had died of natural causes contributed to by neglect with Louise Rae, Coroner for Blackpool, noting there had been “gross failings” in her hospital care and “basic failings” from her GP and pharmacist. She commented that “it is staggering that she was spoken to in primary and secondary care and sepsis was not considered”.

While some of the delays in her care were attributed to the pandemic and subsequent lockdowns, it was found there remains a general lack of awareness around sepsis following medical abortions with the coroner calling for a better understanding of maternal sepsis.

The Deputy Medical Director of Blackpool Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation, Dr Grahame Good, issued an apology to the family and confirmed that the Trust fully accepted all of the findings of the inquest. He acknowledged that there were “clearly things that could have been done differently” with regards to the care and “while they may not ultimately have saved her life, could have played their part.” He provided assurances on behalf of the Trust that there had been a full investigation into the circumstances of the death, which has also been considered by The Healthcare Safety Investigation Branch and recommendations made.

If you believe that you, or a loved one, have suffered harm because of suspected clinical negligence, one of our specialist clinical negligence solicitors would be happy to speak with you and advise you as to your options, including a formal complaint and a legal claim. There is no initial charge for discussing this with us and we will talk you through your options, including how to fund a case and the possibility of a no win no fee arrangement (conditional fee agreement or CFA).”

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Prior to the Covid 19 pandemic getting a GP appointment could be frustrating but with a little perseverance at 8am usually a face to face appointment could be obtained the same day and non urgent appointments could be arranged within a week or two.  During the height of the pandemic patients appreciated that this couldn’t happen.  GPs needed to keep themselves and their patients safe so they stayed behind closed doors and went online, much the same as the rest of us.  However, a lot of our lives have returned to normal; offices have reopened; shops, restaurants and bars are welcoming their customers; schools, colleges and universities are seeing their students face to face but the GP surgery doors remains, for the most part seem to the outward facing world, closed.  It can take weeks to get an appointment when you need one and we don’t know why.

In September 2021 ITV reported on the issue.  A GP listed various reasons for the feeling that GPs are no longer accessible to include doctors being overworked due to the pandemic; considerably more enquiries coming into the practice (as many as 25% more than pre pandemic), backlogs created by the pandemic and GPs taking a large role in the administration of Covid 19 vaccines. GPs are reported to be as frustrated with the situation as patients.

At Graystons many of our client’s express their frustration at being unable to get an appointment with their GP.  The article prepared by ITV quotes 57% of GP appointments being back to face to face compared to 80% before the pandemic.  To our clients it feels far less than the figure quoted when elderly patients are struggling to complete an e-consult; phone calls to surgeries go unanswered and calls made to GPs aren’t returned.

At the moment we hear a lot about problems being able to see a GP and raise health concerns.  We hear it from clients; from our family and friends; on the news and on social media but the real concern is that whilst we can all see that there is a problem we can’t see a solution or an end.  The Department of Health have said flatly that GPs need to see more patients but for the reasons given above GPs practices are not able to meet demand.  The Department of Health have also pledged more money to expand GP capacity and deliver a ‘world class service’.  Time will tell and we can all hope that it works but for now the patients don’t feel that they are being given a ‘world class service’.

Whilst the service remains as it is it is likely that problems will occur; patients will fall through the cracks; conditions will get missed and there will be delays in diagnosis, treatment and care which will often result in a worse outcome.

If you are concerned that you have suffered as a consequence of your GP service please contact us and one of our experienced team would be pleased to discuss your concerns with you

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The Cauda Equina (horses’ tail) is a bundle of roots at the lower end of your spine which communicates with your brain and sends nerve signals back and forth regarding the sensory and motor functions of your lower limbs and the organs in your pelvic region.

Cauda Equina syndrome is very rare and is caused by nerves in the lower back suddenly becoming severely compressed. Symptoms include- sciatica on both sides, weakness, or numbness in both legs, numbing around genitals or anus and urinary retention/ incontinence (which is not usual for you). These symptoms can appear rapidly or over the course of several weeks/ months and CNS can be identified on an MRI, CT scan or Myelogram.

Cauda Equina syndrome requires emergency hospital admission and surgery to relieve the pressure on your nerves. It is very time sensitive and the best time to be treated is within 48 hours of the onset of your symptoms. The longer Cauda Equina is left untreated, the greater the chances are of permanent paralysis and incontinence, impaired bladder or bowel control, difficulty walking and other neurological/ physical problems.

If you undergo surgery to treat Cauda Equina and it has impacted your ability to walk you may need physical therapy, and you may be advised to see a specialist if you have any incontinence/ sexual dysfunction. For long term treatment you may be given certain medication for your pain management or for better bladder/bowel control.

Cauda Equina may lead to a medical negligence claim if any reported symptoms are missed, this can result in the necessary MRI scan or surgery being delayed. If this is the case, then Cauda Equina deteriorates, and the symptoms become permanent.

If you have concerns that you or a family member have received substandard medical treatment and an injury has been suffered as a direct consequence, we may be able to investigate a potential claim for you, please contact Graystons Solicitors on 0151 645 0055.  Alternatively, you can email enquiries@graystons.co.uk and we can arrange to call you.

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According to the Metro online, an independent investigation has concluded following a 6-year fight from the parents of a new born baby, to look into the failings of University Hospitals Bristol and Weston NHS Foundation Trust.

The baby was born prematurely and weighed just 5lbs.  Once allowed home he suffered from symptoms which led his parents to return him to hospital.  He was initially taken to Western General Hospital and then transferred to Bristol Royal Hospital  He developed an acute respiratory illness deriving from the common cold and became so poorly that he struggled to breathe.  There was a two-day delay in him receiving antibiotics from doctors at Bristol Royal Hospital, and sadly he suffered a cardiac arrest.  He died two days later after his heart failed for a second time.

The investigation into the treatment has concluded there was a failure by the two Trusts to provide lifesaving drugs in time and in addition the Trust was guilty of a catalogue of failings.  The Trusts’ actions could also be perceived as a “deliberate attempt to deceive” after the family were concerned that the Trusts tried to cover up their failings.  The family has had to wait 6 years since his death to obtain the outcome of the investigation.

https://metro.co.uk/2021/10/05/nhs-deliberately-tried-to-cover-up-failures-when-newborn-baby-died-15365254/

Our thoughts are with the family, and we hope that they received the answers that they sought.

If you have concerns that you or a family member have received substandard medical treatment and injury has been suffered as a direct consequence, please feel free to contact Graystons Solicitors for an informal non-obligation chat on 0151 645 0055.  Alternatively, you can email enquiries@graystons.co.uk and we can arrange to call you.  We may be able to investigate a potential claim for you on a No Win No Fee Agreement.

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As reported by BBC news, Joshua Sahota was admitted to the Wedgewood House Mental Health Unit in August 2019 following a decline in his mental health.

At inquest, it was found that insufficient staffing levels, including failing to have a psychologist in post, contributed to Mr Sahota sadly taking his own life on 9 September 2019.

It was also found that there was confusion regarding the sorts of items which were banned from the ward; this meant that Mr Sahota had access to a plastic bag which was a restricted item. Access to this restricted item tragically contributed to Mr Sahota’s death by asphyxia. 

 Other factors found to have contributed to Mr Sahota’s death included inadequate observations, failures to document a crisis plan and failures to efficiently put in place a care plan. 

The Chief Executive of the Trust, Stuart Richardson, issued an apology to Mr Sahota’s family and advised that steps have been taken to improve their internal processes to try and reduce the chances of similar incident occurring again in the future.

If you believe that you, or a loved one, have suffered harm because of suspected clinical negligence, one of our specialist clinical negligence solicitors would be happy to speak with you and advise you as to your options, including a formal complaint and a legal claim. There is no initial charge for discussing this with us and we will talk you through your options, including how to fund a case and the possibility of a no win no fee arrangement (conditional fee agreement or CFA).”

 

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During August 2021 the Blackpool Gazette reported that ‘only one in seven people urgently referred to Blackpool Teaching Hospitals Trust with suspected bowel cancer received a diagnosis or an all clear within four weeks’.

A new NHS target is being introduced to get 75% of all suspected cancer patients a diagnosis within four weeks. However, NHS England Figures show only 14% of patients with suspected cancer at Blackpool Teaching Hospital received their test results within 28 days of an urgent GP referral. This is due to a delay in testing patients.

The Bowel Cancer UK charity said there are staffing shortages and more funding is needed to carry out endoscopies, these procedures are needed to diagnose bowel cancer and if diagnosed early enough it can be treatable and curable.

The wait for an endoscopy is increasing due to the pandemic backlog and waiting longer for a test can decrease the patients’ chances of complete remission or survival.

If you believe you have suffered as a result of a delay in diagnosis of bowel cancer at Blackpool Victoria Hospital or any other hospital and would like to discuss whether there are any grounds for a potential medical negligence claim with one of our medical negligence specialists, please contact us on 0151 645 0055.

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In early August the Liverpool Echo reported that “hopelessly incompetent” midwife, Rosemarie Wilding, had been suspended from midwifery for the maximum time allowed, 12 months, by the National Midwifery Council (NMC) after an investigation into the care she provided to mums and babies whilst working at The Liverpool Women’s Hospital.

The midwife was sacked from her post at Liverpool Women’s in 2019 after her performance had been raised as an issue and she had subsequently failed to improve.  The hospital then referred her to the NMC who investigated. Ms Wilding did not return to midwifery and the Liverpool Echo reported that when her suspension comes to an end she has no plans to return.

The NMC investigated 24 separate charges of poor performance.  A panel found 17 of those charges to be proven.  The Liverpool Echo reported that the panel heard from Ms Wilding’s former colleagues who provided damning accounts of her incompetence to include allegations that she had failed to record changes in babies heart rates; missed signs of sepsis; incorrectly prepared records which caused confusion in continuing care; failed to escalate matters to doctors and misinterpreted CTG traces.  Colleagues described having to intervene because Ms Wilding just wasn’t doing as she should have been.

Ms Wilding’s actions put her patients and their babies at risk of untold harm.

If you were cared for by Ms Wilding, you think you or your baby were harmed and would like to discuss your concerns one of our specialist clinical negligence team would be pleased to hear from you.

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Ian Paterson, a breast surgeon, became well known in 2017 when he was convicted and sent to prison for carrying our needless breast surgeries on his patients.  He has been sentenced to 20 years in prison.

Women who had been wronged by Mr Paterson successfully brought claims against him but further claims were prevented by a court order in 2018 that did not allow solicitors to make claims for victims who came forward later.

On 26/07/2021 the BBC reported that the position has now changed.  The BBC confirmed that Spire Healthcare in the West Midlands has opened up a new compensation fund for victims of Mr Paterson who worked at Heart of England NHS Foundation Trust, Independent Spire Parkway and Spire Little Aston.  It is anticipated that he had 11,000 patients across all sites.  Since 2018 a further 5,500 patients have been identified and Spire Healthcare have confirmed that their investigations are ongoing.

If you have been identified as a patient who was harmed by Mr Paterson or you think you were harmed by Mr Paterson and would like to discuss your concerns one of our specialist clinical negligence team would be pleased to hear from you.

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Cheshire Live has today reported on a ‘pattern of failures’ from Dr Mohammed Djawed Tahery, an Ear Nose and Throat Surgeon, working at the Countess of Chester Hospital between 2007 and 2018, that resulted in him being struck from the medical register.

Dr Tahery’s conduct was considered at a Tribunal after he was accused of performing surgery to a lesser standard than should be expected, providing false information to patients in advance of surgery and inappropriately reassuring patients about the potential outcomes of surgery.  Further failures then followed when he did not acknowledge and assist when the patients returned with concerns.  6 separate patients gave evidence to the tribunal.  1 explaining that they had inappropriately been advised of a 0% risk of a poor outcome going into surgery and then having to live with the consequences of a poor outcome following surgery.

Following the hearing the tribunal panel reported that they considered that the treatment provided by Dr Tahery was ‘seriously below the standard expected of a competent rhinoplasty surgeon and this amounted to misconduct which is serious.’  He was also criticised for bringing his profession into disrepute with his poor behaviours.  He was struck from the medical register.

Dr Tahery provided care which was below the standard of a reasonable competent medical practitioner and as a direct consequence of that substandard care he caused his patient’s harm.    The practices outlined by the Tribunal are the basis for bringing a medical negligence claim.

If you have been treated by Dr Tahery and are concerned that his actions may have resulted in injury please contact us.  One of our specialist medical negligence team would be happy to discuss your concerns with you.