A medical negligence expert says the Government’s announcement that eleven hospital Trusts, including the Northern Lincolnshire and Goole Hospitals NHS Trust, are being placed in special measures is long-awaited and over-due.
Simon Wilson is a member of the team of specialists at Neil Hudgell Solicitors which represents patients and their families who have been the victims of negligent treatment at the Northern Lincolnshire and Goole Hospitals NHS Trust. The Trust was named today by Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt as one of 14 being investigated for high death rates and one of 11 where problems had become so entrenched tough action was needed.
Simon Wilson said: “We are dealing with clients who have suffered a number of problems at this Trust, particularly relating to general medicine, elderly care, diabetic care, hip surgery and stroke. The main issue is with non-elective admissions, in other words emergencies.
“For many of our clients, the news that this Trust has now been placed in special measures will be welcomed as they will now feel that at last the Government is recognising the failings which have caused so much suffering to so many patients.”
Simon Wilson continued: “In terms of complaints to the Trust, 74% relate to clinical care as opposed to the national average of only 47%.
“There are also issues with Do Not Resuscitate orders, improper implementation of the Liverpool Care Pathway and issues relating to lack of hydration and lack of assistance with feeding. The rates of MRSA are in the bottom third of all Trusts and pressure sore problems are above average.”
Simon Wilson said another major area identified was stroke care and that whilst this has improved massively at Scunthorpe General Hospital; procedures are not being implemented properly at Diana Princess of Wales Hospital in Grimsby where there is no out of hours thrombolysis treatment for stroke which may have a massive impact on outcome for patients.
“Out of hours care and weekend cover is a massive issue too. There is no medical Specialist Registrar working on a Saturday at Scunthorpe. On the medical wards at night time, our clients are telling us that care is mainly provided by first year trainees.”
Simon Wilson listed the other issues prevalent at the Northern Lincolnshire and Goole Hospitals NHS Trust:
- Inadequate medical handovers
- Poor note keeping
- Lack of basic nursing care
- Lack of Trust-wide sharing about serious untoward events and never events.