Family demands answers on hospital death

By Juliette MaxamA DISTRAUGHT family is demanding answers after a father-of-four died in hospital.Neale Barter, 41, died in Broomfield Hospital, Chelmsford, and a post-mortem examination revealed he had suffered a head injury.

By Juliette Maxam

A DISTRAUGHT family is demanding answers after a father-of-four died in hospital.

Neale Barter, 41, died in Broomfield Hospital, Chelmsford, and a post-mortem examination revealed he had suffered a head injury.

His mother, Sylvia, and sister, Angela Thorogood, are unhappy and upset about the way both he and they were treated while at the hospital and called for an investigation.


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Mr Barter was taken by ambulance to Broomfield Hospital after falling and hitting the back of his head at his mother's home in Spital Road, Maldon, at 10am, on October 22.

When Mrs Barter and Mrs Thorogood arrived at the hospital in the afternoon, they found Mr Barter sitting up and talking.

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Mr Barter was taken for a chest x-ray, but when he returned he was unconscious and never regained consciousness again.

His family stayed with him all night on a ward, but were unable to use toilet and washing facilities there, instead having to walk several hundred metres to the nearest visitors' bathroom.

Mr Barter died at 1am the following day and Mrs Thorogood said: “We are unhappy about how both Neale and we were treated at Broomfield. We don't want this to happen to any other family.”

A spokeswoman for Mid Essex Hospitals Trust, which runs Broomfield Hospital, said it did not comment on individual cases, but added any official complaint would be investigated.

Paying tribute to Mr Barter, his sister said: “He was happy-go-lucky, generous, fun to be with and a good friend. If he was going to have some fun, he had to include everyone.”

A keen fisherman, Mr Barter lived in Maldon all his life, attending All Saints Primary and The Plume Schools, and working as a mechanic at the family's nursery.

Four years ago he was involved in a bitter divorce, as a result of which he burnt down his family home in Fambridge Road, Maldon.

An inquest into Mr Barter's death is due to be held next year.

juliette.maxam@eadt.co.uk

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