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Patient: Margaret Green, Aged 81, died January 1996. Hospital: Kent & Canterbury, U.K.. Margaret Green was an active pensioner, who had travelled by bus on the morning of her admission to hospital to do voluntary work for Oxfam. She died in a U.K. public hospital as a result of 'involuntary euthanasia' (actually intentional unlawful killing), having been written off because of her age. She was 81 years old and was not suffering from a terminal illness. She was admitted with an acute abdominal condition and needed an urgent surgical opinion. What she got (despite constant complaints of hunger and thirst) was a negative fluid balance of over 4.5 litres (8 pints) and bed sores. No special tests, no surgical opinion and no Nursing Care Plan. There was never any reason for 'Nil by mouth' to be hung over the bed, and administrators were "unable" to identify the person who put it there. We were all told that she just needed "rest and treatment". What they secretly wrote in her notes was DNR (do not resuscitate).
The hospital claims that this was an isolated case resulting from an unfortunate series of communication failures resulting in nobody noticing the gross dehydration, the increasingly swollen abdomen and the failure of the surgeons to show up.
An Isolated Case? The way the hospital treated my mother was slick, economical (three litres of saline, no antibiotics, no analgesics over a five day period is cheap!) and involved a lot of looking the other way. I now know this was not the first (or last) case of its kind at this hospital. The hospital's response to my complaint took nine months. It was skilfully worded and evaded the real issues. Again, I feel that this was a tried and tested response. The same applied to the independent review and the Ombudsman. Twelve years on and I am no closer to finding out why these failures in my mother's treatment occurred or who was responsible. The complaints process was a complete waste of time.
Patient: Neil Askew, Aged 11½, died 31 December 1996. Hospital: Whipps Cross Hospital, U.K.. Neil was taken to see his G.P. following headache, vomiting and the appearance of an unusual rash on his foot. The G.P. suspected meningitis and telephoned the hospital to arrange Neil's admission and clearly referred to the headache, vomiting and rash. The doctor did not tell Neil or his mother of his provisional diagnosis, neither did he administer any antibiotics. He gave them a referral letter and told them to make their own way to the hospital.
At the hospital, Neil waited 1 hour 40 minutes to be assessed by the triage nurse, although she had read the referral letter upon Neil's arrival. She expressed no concern when shown the rash, and instead asked for a urine sample (useless for confirmation of meningitis). A further 1 hour 40 minutes were spent in the paediatric waiting room. Medical staff were unhelpful and unconcerned as has condition worsened. Neil's parents finally succeeded in getting a nurse to take his condition seriously, but he lost consciousness before a doctor could examine him and died 8 hours later.
Throughout the investigations which followed, staff lied and hospital investigators dragged their feet. The green "Applications for Admission" form which clearly stated "Headache/Rash" was intentionally suppressed by clinical staff and administrators, although Neil's parents were repeatedly told that nobody was aware of Neil's rash. The Ombudsman declined to take any robust action despite being shown proof of this intentional and gross maladministration.
One local 'resolution', two 'independent' reviews and an Ombudsman's report have revealed little and achieved even less. The investigations surrounding Neil's death have taken three years and cost approximately ￡25,000, but have failed to reveal why things went wrong or who was responsible.
Patient: Kathleen Stenson, Aged 81 years It has come to our attention that Mrs Kathleen Stenson and her son William are being subject to abuse at The Court Nursing Home, West Felton, Oswestry in England. Apparently, the Deputy Matron of the Court Nursing Home has said that ‘Nobody leaves here alive’. Is this policy or just an observation?
William is in a lone struggle right now, against Shropshire Social Services and The Court Nursing Home who appear to be acting beyond their powers in denying him freedom to visit with his mother in privacy and by fabricating innuendos and false accusations against William with the result that he is supervised during visits to his mother, that conversations between them are being listened to including censorship and interfering with the private mail of Mrs Stenson, all being perpetrated by the management of the nursing home.
William on all his visits to his mother finds her parched and requesting water. He complains to management who, instead of wanting to quench Mrs Stenson's thirst, call the cops and social services. Please visit www.southerncrossnursinghomes.com and see how you can help.
Patient: Robert Powell, Aged 10 years, died 17 April 1990. Hospital/Health Centre: Morriston Hospital, Swansea/Ystradgynlais Health Centre . Robert Powell died of a treatable condition called Addison’s disease which, unknown to his parents, had been suspected four months before Robbie’s death, when he had been an inpatient at Morriston Hospital, Swansea. Addison’s disease invariably results in death without treatment; however, if treated the patient can live a full and normal life. Between the 2nd and 17th April Robert was seen by five GPs from the Ystradgynlais Health Centre on seven separate occasions [i.e. 2, 6, 11, 15, 16 and twice on the 17]. In the week leading to Robert's death he had been vomiting, was so weak he couldn't walk unassisted, had excessive weight loss and had dilated pupils and central cyanosis when he regained consciousness after fainting. In the light of these symptoms the GP refused hospital admission on her first visit on the day of death. On her second visit the GP again refused hospital admission but eventually agreed following a heated argument. However, the Powells' request for an ambulance was refused. On arrival at the hospital, Robert stopped breathing, and died shortly after.
The Powells were refused an Inquest. The senior partner at the health centre refused Mr Powell's request for an investigation into Robert's death. The Powells had no other option but to complain to the appropriate Family Practitioners Committee. A subsequent appeal hearing at the Welsh Office collapsed because of maladministration which the Welsh Office vigorously denied for three years. However, even when the Powells were vindicated, and the Welsh Office were forced to admit the maladministration, the Powells were still refused their statutory right to a fair and honest investigation into Robert's death. The Powells were forced into a civil action for negligence hoping that the truth would be established. However, that wasn't to be. In 1996 West Glamorgan Health Authority admitted liability for Robert's death with the same information that was available on the night the child died - ￡80,000 was paid into court. The Powells did not receive any compensation as they challenged the Judgement that GPs had no legal duty to tell parents the truth following a child's negligent death. The case is currently in the European Court of Human Rights. The police investigated the case between 1994 and 1996 but the Crown Prosecution Service [CPS] said that there was insufficient evidence to prosecute any of the doctors. Mr Powell challenged the CPS's decision and was informed that no stone had been left unturned by the police and it was a matter for conjecture as to whether any enquiries by the police would reveal further material and significant evidence. It later came to light that the GPs under investigation had been providing a service as police surgeons for the past 20 years, to the very police force that had inadequately investigated Robert's death. Following a formal complaint in 1998 the police investigation was reopened and there are now at least 16 lines of inquiry notwithstanding the same factual information was available in 1996. In Mr Powell's view, this highlights the inadequacies of the initial police investigation and also the failure of the CPS to properly assess the case. The outcome is anxiously awaited.
It is the view of the Powells, and that of many others, that the NHS complaint procedures are conveniently structured to protect the medical profession. There is no current mechanism to address impropriety and the abuse of power by individuals within the NHS investigating authorities and government. The absence of a deterrent not only breeds complacency but encourages individuals, with a conflict of interest, to cover up medical mistakes. The Powells have taken their complaints to the Prime Minister on several occasions. However, the complaints are referred straight back to the individuals complained against and the complaints are again brushed under the carpet of deceit. It is the failure of the government to address public concern that leads to such atrocities as the Bristol Heart Babies and many others.
We owe respect to the living - to the dead we owe only truth. Voltaire
Patient: David Glass, Aged 17 years. Hospital: Portsmouth Hospitals NHS Trust . David Glass was born prematurely at 30 weeks gestation on 23 July 1986 in Portsmouth because he had a condition called hydrocephalus, where fluid accumulates on the brain. Carol Glass was told her son would not survive. After 55 minutes he was still alive, and was seen by a doctor from the special baby care unit. Initially he was artificially ventilated but the treatment was stopped and his mother was again told he would not survive. He continued, however, to breathe unaided. Six months later, after his mother had contacted
the Association for Spina Bifida and Hydrocephalus, she met a consultant, Mr Forest at Carshalton Hospital. He recommended treatment by inserting a shunt to drain off the fluid, which happened three months later. In 1998, David's breathing became noisy. He was admitted to hospital and treated with
steroids in preparation for an endoscopy. On his way to the operating theatre, his mother was asked to sign a consent form for tonsillectomy. Following the operation he had four convulsions and was treated with a tranquilliser, called diazepam. He was placed on a life support machine, and suffered from pneumonia and blood poisoning caused by three types of bacteria. He was tube-fed with pre-digested food, which gave him severe diarrhoea, and was given oral antibiotics. He was discharged, but had to be re-admitted as his pneumonia had not cleared. The medical team wanted to give him diamorphine and allow him to die, but his
mother refused, with the support of a solicitor. Over the next month or two he spent a lot of time in and out of hospital, and in October 1998 diamorphine was again suggested and the mother refused, but the Chief Executive of the hospital endorsed the treatment, and the police advised against his mother taking him
home. David was treated with a subcutaneous diamorphine drip and was given no food or fluids. When he deteriorated, turned blue and virtually stopped breathing, his mother and relatives removed the drip and stimulated him by rubbing, and smelling salts, and he improved. He was sent home under police escort. The GP gave him a morphine antagonist, intravenous antibiotics and oxygen, and changed the liquid food. By March 1999 he was feeding again without the tube. Carol went to Court to establish the right to an assurance that, should David be re-admitted, he would not be given diamorphine. She was told it was "not in David's interest" to keep him alive.
Patient: Hospital: (Details withheld at author's request) Vaccine Damage is only the Beginning . The effects of vaccine damage on an infant are not just a simple life-long single tragedy. The repercussions of that initial event will often stimulate other tragedies that, taken together, exacerbate the epitonic aspects of that
person’s life. It may be appropriate therefore to give you a snapshot of some of these events that have darkened my daughter’s life. I am sure that these sorts of events are not uncommon and are probably mirrored in the lives of others who have been similarly damaged. L was born a healthy child to loving parents in 1960. We were told that it was in her best interests to have her vaccinated at six-months of age [DPT]. So we did just that. Almost immediately after the first vaccination L went into a paroxysm of convulsion, but seemingly recovered after a few days. This was reported to the doctor at the time of the next appointment for phase two of the programme. The doctor said that she would give only a
reduced dose (thereby acknowledging there was some contraindication to subsequent doses). Again within a very short time (the same day), further and more complicated convulsions occurred and L was seriously ill for almost a fortnight. The doctor then decided that no more vaccinations should be given.
Subsequently after neurological investigation L was pronounced to be brain-damaged.
L was lovingly cared for by her parents, but at the age of ten months, whilst still being breast-fed, she had an accident that required hospitalisation. The hospital told my wife and me that we could only visit her once a day at 6 p.m.; and further my wife was given 36 hours to wean L from the breast. L was in hospital for three weeks and returned home a devastated child. As parents we were left to cope with our child, without any adequate advice on what we might expect, and when she developed some behavioural problems through her lack of ability to understand the corner of the world into which she had been so violently thrown, she was put into a drug regime (at the age of eight) that has
continued more or less continuously until the present day. When L was about 20 we moved to another part of the UK and she was put into a respite care situation, on the advice of her then GP, so that we could make the transition and at the same time gain a little time to recover from the years of caring for our damaged child. The private Home that took L, registered by social services, found that she did not sleep very well. The care staff, rather than feel sympathetic and be understanding of her temporary separation from her parents, told the
manager that if L was not removed from the Home by the time they came on duty the following night, they would not remain on duty. The manager therefore had L admitted to a local mental handicap hospital, where she was put on a ward of teenagers who were there mainly for disruptive behaviour. L was terrorised and
received serious injuries when she was struck with something like a paling from a fence that still had the nail embedded in it. Her foot and hand were affected by acute cellulitis for about six weeks. She was so affected by this terrorism that she often fainted with alarm and had to be admitted several times to the hospital infirmary. By the time she was discharged some fourteen months later she was doubly incontinent and so drugged that she was incoherent and uncoordinated. By this time her mother was ill and the hospital in the new area was asked for assistance. This was refused, and the same week L’s mother died. I was then her sole carer, and was left to cope as best I could. Eventually
the hospital took in L, first as a day patient, and then admitted her full-time because I was working.
L was a patient there for about ten years, and during that time she was assaulted by being bitten by another resident on four occasions, on two of those, suturing was necessary to her hand and face. The hospital promised to separate the two women but did not do so until after the third occasion. The fourth biting incident was by another resident. When I started to take legal action against the health authority for lack of care, L was seen by a plastic
surgeon who assessed her injuries that had by then healed to scars. His view was that as she was ‘mentally handicapped’ she would not be aware of the disfigurement and that damages would be little or none. So I took-up the matter as a complaint with the health authority that promised to look after her better in the future. Following that she was placed in a locked ward, where a further attack took place. Finally as a sop, so to speak, the first attacker had all of her bottom teeth removed. [A ploy that was mistakenly determined to avoid her causing harm to anyone else.]
L was rehabilitated from hospital in 1992 into a community living situation where she was placed with one other handicapped person and a team of carers on 24-hour duty. By this time she had (unknowingly to her carers) developed PTSD as a result of the trauma she had experienced in hospital. Her long experience of being faced with situations from which she could not escape or defend, had brought about reactions that when triggered would put her into an anxiety state. A state that was not understood, because her history had not been explained nor had her initial neurological impairment ever been investigated. So once more she was drugged, and again she became doubly incontinent, didn’t sleep properly, lost weight, dribbled constantly, etc. She lost all of her acquired social activities: swimming, riding, music and walking.
The money that financed this community living situation for L was ring-fenced until last year, now it is at the mercy of local government politicians. Due to the need for cuts in expenditure the social services department is taking steps to pass the scheme over to the private sector on an agency basis, and amalgamate schemes so that there would be a minimum of four people to each house.
For forty years L has been misunderstood, misdiagnosed, mistreated and abused, all because her innocent parents believed that they were doing what they had been told was right. I feel that the NHS and social services has a duty to be called on to respond with an acknowledgement of their errors and some substantial contribution to an adequate future welfare of L.
Patient: Hospital: Watch out, you old chickens! By Mal Bowen. I welcome the recent news of an increase in the state pension, but have misgivings as to whether it will be good news for all pensioners. The reason for my scepticism is that for the past four years my wife and I have been campaigning for justice for my late mother-in-law, who was a victim of involuntary euthanasia.
Throughout our campaign we have encountered all forms of rule bending by every authority that we have approached, including NHS trusts, the GMC, the Police Force, the CPS and the Police Complaints Authority. Whenever we appealed to the government concerning this blatant rule bending, we were told that they could not intervene in the decisions reached by any of the authorities involved. Since 1996, I have spoken with the relatives of hundreds of victims, who suffered the same fate as my late mother-in-law, only to discover that they had encountered the same problems with the various authorities, including the government.
I believe that my late mother-in-law and many other elderly and vulnerable people have died as a direct result of decisions taken by unethical senior members of the medical profession, for purely economic reasons. It is my opinion that successive governments have been well aware of this practice, but have chosen not to intervene and act against these despicable people. I believe the reason for their inaction is that although these medical professionals are clearly breaking the law, as well as the Hippocratic oath, they are also boosting the economy, with significant savings to the government on medical treatment, long term care and pensions etc.
In my opinion, a suitable analogy of the government's attitude to these unethical medical professionals would be that of a poultry farmer (the Government) who employs a guard dog (senior medical professional) to protect and care for his flock. The dog is unable to protect all of the birds, as there are far too many for one guard dog, so the dog reduces his workload by killing off the odd old non-productive bird (elderly or vulnerable patient).
The poultry farmer is fully aware that the guard dog is killing birds. But refuses to punish the dog in any way, because of (a) The savings he is making, by only having to feed one dog and (b) The substantial savings he makes from no longer having to house, feed and care for old non-productive members of the flock.
I believe that some unethical members of the medical profession may regard an increase in pension as raising the bounty on our elderly and vulnerable citizens, within the safe sanctuary of the government's blind eye!
If you know of cases of abuse, tell us now !
Please email to firstname.lastname@example.org or Telephone 01227 713661 or Facsimile 01227 711426,or write to:
15 Water Meadows
Extract from the Patients’ Charter. ( Page 5, 1995 edition )
“Rights and standards throughout the NHS
Access to services
You have the right to:
receive health care on the basis of your clinical need, not on your ability to pay, your lifestyle or any other factor;”
Mrs Jill Baker
5 Billett Avenue,
Telephone 023 9226 1009
Facsimile 023 9226 1009
12th July 2000.
The trial of Diane Wilde, Raymond Davis and Julie Hodgkins at Portsmouth Crown Court.
These three defendants will be sentenced on Friday 14th July 2000, for saving their nephew's life by thwarting the doctors attempts to end it!
These caring people are not criminals, They are heroes. The justice system has completely failed them. The taxpayer paid for a Queens Council for St Mary's Hospital (the prosecution) but would not provide the same level of service for the defendants.
They were only provided with mediocre barristers, who in my opinion made a disgraceful job of their defence. This was not a level playing field.
1. The defending barristers failed to point out that it was the doctors who initiated the attack, not Diane Wilde; How could she when she was completely occupied trying to resuscitate her nephew?
2. When the defendants went to complain to the police they gave a statement totally unaware that it would later be used against them in court. They were not issued with a caution. In my opinion this is totally illegal and should have resulted in a mistrial! But the Judge would not allow this!
3. The Judge stated that he would not allow any emphasis on the administration of Diamorphine to David Glass? As this was the sole reason why the struggle took place when David's relatives rescued him from the continued administration of Diamorphine and resuscitated him, how can this then be seen as a fair trial?
4. Carol Glass, David's mother has asked the police to investigate the case against the doctor's perjury in the witness box and their attempts to murder David. She, quite rightly in my opinion, feels that the police have no intention of doing any such thing! Is this British Justice, I think not!!!
In my opinion this trial was completely unfair to the defendants and the Home Secretary must call for a retrial!
(The "Do not resuscitate" patient at St Mary's Hospital Portsmouth)
The case of nurse Pink . Mr. Graham Pink was a charge nurse who was fired when he stood up for decent patient care in his hospital in Stockport. He raised his concerns about poor staffing levels on his ward with every level of management up to and including the Secretary of State for Health, and got nowhere. Finally he went public. Although his Health Authority was clearly prepared to ignore any amount of internal criticism, it was not prepared to tolerate public criticism, and sacked him. After spending a huge amount of public money defending the indefensible, the Health Authority eventually admitted unfair dismissal - but only to avoid cross examination in court which would have washed even more dirty laundry in public. For more information, please see some of Mr Pink's own views.
BMJ bully report . Bullying is common in NHS trust . Bullying at work is associated with job dissatisfaction, absence, poor performance, and turnover. In a survey of staff of an NHS community trust, it was found that over a third reported being subjected to one or more forms of bullying in the previous year and 42% had witnessed the bullying of others. Staff who had been bullied had lower job satisfaction and higher job induced stress, depression, anxiety, and intention to leave the job.
Extracted from: BMJ 1999; 318: 228-232.techniques of neutralisation
"Techniques of neutralization: a theory of delinquency" was published over 50 years ago in American Sociological Review. The authors, Sykes and Matza, proposed the theory that, following deviant behaviour, individuals can protect themselves from self-blame (flowing from internalised norms) and the blame of others by justifying or rationalising their deviant behaviour. This theory remains accepted by criminologists today.
Authors: Gresham M Sykes and David Matza
Journal: American Sociological Review
Dr Bolsin . Since leaving Bristol, Dr Stephen Bolsin has settled his wife and family in Geelong, a small town on the south coast of Australia.... The battle he began in 1990 to stop babies dying at the Bristol Royal Infirmary has left him deeply scarred.... It was a stand made in the face of threats to his career and official intransigence and it still seems brave now.... His suspicions were aroused soon after joining the BRI because he realised that its surgeons were struggling with procedures that were being performed with relative ease at other hospitals.... He feared retribution would follow and it did. It was not swift or spectacular, but it was effective. He was frozen out.... He soon realised that key surgeons were ignoring him in favour of colleagues who had not "rocked the boat". (extracted from the Telegraph, 30 May 1998)
itor of The Times, published 10 November, 1965
Sir, We, the undersigned, have been shocked by the treatment of geriatric patients in certain mental hospitals... The attitude of the Ministry of Health to complaints has reinforced our anxieties. In consequence, we have decided to collect evidence of ill-treatment of geriatric patients throughout the country, to demonstrate the need for a national investigation. We hope this will lead to the securing of effective and humane control over these hospitals by the Ministry, which seems at present to be lacking. We shall be grateful if those who have encountered malpractices in this sphere will supply us with detailed information, which would of course be treated as confidential.
Strabolgi, Beaumont, Heytesbury, Brian Abel-Smith, Edward Ardizzone, Audrey Harvey, John Hewetson, Barbara Robb, Bill Sargent, Daniel Woolgar O.P.
10, Hampstead Grove,
Sans Everything: a Case to Answer . The letter to The Times (above), with its authorship of Peers, a distinguished academic, a celebrated artist, social workers and clergymen had what Barbara Robb (1967) described as 'astonishing results' in the form of 'hundreds of letters releasing a pent-up rage and misery...including...many from nurses and social workers'. In due course a selection of this and other material formed the basis of a book edited by Mrs Robb, with a title drawn from Shakespeare referring to the last of the seven ages of man, Sans Everything: a Case to Answer. The heart of the book was a passionate cry of distress at the undignified suffering of so many elderly people in hospitals up and down the country, but in addition there were a number of chapters by experts suggesting reforms which might alleviate this sort of suffering. (extracted from Chapter 1, Hospitals in Trouble)
Louis Dembitz Brandeis, 1856-1941 . American jurist who served as an associate justice of the U.S. Supreme Court (1916-1939). His opposition to monopolies and defense of individual human rights formed the basis of many of his high court decisions.
The address of this website is: www.patientprotect.org.uk
The site is authored and maintained by Roger Green, in memory of his mother.
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