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Trust criticised for high death rate

17th March 2009

The Healthcare Commission has criticised the low standards of care at a hospital which caused needless deaths.

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The watchdog said that between 2005-2008 there were 400 more deaths at Staffordshire General Hospital "than would be expected".

It stated that it found "virtually every stage" of emergency care to be deficient and that health bosses tried to attain targets at the expense of patient care.

Health Secretary Alan Johnson has issued an apology and started an inquiry.

Mr Johnson said they would investigate Mid Staffordshire NHS Foundation Trust between 2002-2007 alongside an independent review into emergency services.

Mr Johnson said: "There was a complete failure of management to address serious problems and monitor performance. This led to a totally unacceptable failure to treat emergency patients safely and with dignity."

The commission began investigating the hospital in 2008 following reports from local people which corresponded with a high number of deaths.

The commission's report said a low number of staff, "inadequate nursing", not enough equipment or leadership were among the problems apparent at the hospital.

The trust's chairman Toni Brisby and chief executive Martin Yeates handed in their resignations earlier in March.

The commission's chairman Sir Ian Kennedy said: "This is a story of appalling standards of care and chaotic systems for looking after patients."

"There is no doubt that patients will have suffered and some of them will have died as a result."

 

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Anonymous

Friday 20th March 2009 @ 14:21

In May 2007 I was on the receiving end of appalling treatment at this Hospital. I was diagnosed with Dukes B cancer and operated on in the April. Whilst in hospital I found the ward lacking in care.
The toilets were filthy as were the showers, so in spite of having major surgery I cleaned the toilet before use and asked the nurse if she could make sure it was cleaned this did not happen! One night I asked three times and nothing happened.
After discharge my husband contacted our GP who had not been told of my discharge and neither had the district nurses. He immediatly arranged for a district nurse to call. I was so il that she took bloods and I received a telephone call from my GP to say he was calling in the next half hour. he had diagnosed C dif and requested an ambulance to take me back into hospital. On arrival I was left in a corridor with other patients and seen by a doctor who put me on a saline drip eventually I was admitted to the assessment ward after being seen in the xray department again on a ward full of people when my husband came back to the hospital he asked me how long I had been off the drip I said it was about two hours he asked a nurse politely if she could reconnect the drip and she exploded with anger saying she had not had a coffee break and was sick of being asked to do things the other patients and visitors looked on in amazement. Later I was admitted to the ACU and underwent dialysis for complete renal failure. I was barrier nursed to some extent although not in a side ward and I admit the treatment I received on the unit was excellent and after six days was allowed home the care I received from my GP saved my life and I would hate anyone to go through the horrific time I had I would not be here if it wasn't for my GP and the District Nurses.


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