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Keogh Review - Angela Curran comments

Angela Curran, a clinical negligence specialist, and a Partner at Cumbria law firm Burnetts comments on the publication of the Keogh Review.

Angela Curran, a clinical negligence specialist, and a Partner at Cumbria law firm Burnetts comments on the publication of the Keogh Review:

“The Keogh Review paints a damning picture of North Cumbria University Hospitals NHS Trust.

I feel very sorry for the Trust’s staff, many of whom have had to cope with staff shortages, badly maintained equipment, lack of training and lack of management support against a backdrop of a blame culture.

I am sure the plans to merge have contributed to the Trust’s avoidance in dealing with its problems: instead of making progress, the Trust has been coasting and that failure to take action has cost patients their lives. 

Our clients have felt first hand the brunt of the Trust’s failings: ineffective complaints handling; inadequate investigations and then very often a lack of transparency where mistakes have been made.  Time and time again, we are told that lessons have been learnt but that is plainly not the case. It will be deeply distressing to our clients to discover that the promised changes in procedures have not been implemented. 

The continued lack of infection prevention measures is a real concern.  In 2010 we represented the family of Allan Dickinson who died having contracted Clostridium  difficile at the Cumberland Infirmary. Following the inquest, the Trust announced a raft of measures it said it had introduced. One of those measures, the hand hygiene audits, is described By Sir Bruce three years later as “unreliable” and “not understood by staff”.

I genuinely hope that the senior  management team of  North Cumbria Trust will grasp the nettle as we have been promised so many times before and address the deep-rooted problems which are leading to so many patients falling victim to avoidable medical accidents.  I will wait, with interest, to see the outcome of the September review.”

Details of the 2010 case can be found here:  www.burnetts.co.uk/publications/news/pirelli-boss-inquest-opens

Published: Wednesday 17th July 2013
Categorised: Medical Negligence

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