54 deaths at Russells Hall Hospital A&E department, over 6 month period, leads to inquiry

  • September 10, 2018
  • Background

    The Care Quality Commission (CQC) has commissioned an independent review into the operations of Russells Hall Hospital in Dudley, West Midlands. Having carried out an inspection in June this year the CQC raised concerns about the number of deaths at the hospital during the first six months of 2018. The inspection carried out on 28 June 2018 rated the overall hospital as ‘requires improvement’ with the A&E department receiving the lowest rating of ‘inadequate’.

    Some of the points raised by the CQC

    These included:

    • patients presenting to the emergency department did not always receive a robust assessment of their clinical presentation and condition during the triage process;
    • the waiting time for triage assessment routinely exceeded one hour for patients who presented by other modes aside from ambulance presentations;
    • staff were unclear on what the triage categories meant for patients who were in the ambulance assessment areas; and
    • a lack of accountability for the safety of patients pre or post triage who were located within the waiting room.

    Inspectors had to intervene at one stage, asking for a patient to be treated after highlighting excessive bleeding. A member of the public raised concerns, at which point a nurse dressed the wound. However, 15 minutes later another member of the public approached the desk and raised concerns. The wound had continued to bleed with the patient feeling unwell. Another 15 minutes passed and an inspector noted “blood oozing out onto their clothing and the floor”. CQC inspectors intervened at this stage to raise concerns in relation to the immediate safety of the patient.

    What our specialists have to say

    Inez Brown, Partner and Head of Clinical Negligence from Medical Accident Group said: “This is a case of repeated failures and a real drop in the standard of care expected of an A&E department. Failing to triage patients correctly can lead to a delay in treatment and unnecessary suffering. This inquiry will hopefully result in Russells Hall’s A&E department improving the standard of care it provides.”  

    With expert, experienced teams based in Birmingham and Worcester, we have secured awards for many clients following negligent medical treatment. If you or a member of your family has suffered from poor medical treatment, Medical Accident Group can help. Our team of specialist medical negligence solicitors have over 30 years’ experience. We will guide you through the process of making a claim. If you believe you have a claim, call the team now on 0800 050 1668.

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