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Families share 'worrying accounts' of hospital care in wake of mum's death

PUBLISHED: 17:42 27 January 2020 | UPDATED: 10:27 28 January 2020

Horace Nunn, who died in 2016 Picture: SUPPLIED BY FAMILY

Horace Nunn, who died in 2016 Picture: SUPPLIED BY FAMILY

SUPPLIED BY FAMILY

Criticism is mounting against a Suffolk hospital after several more families came forward with "worrying accounts" about their relatives' care.

Susan Warby's husband Jon Warby outside Suffolk Coroners' Court in Ipswich, where an inquest heard that Mr Warby received an anonymous letter highlighting errors in a medical procedure carried out on his wife at the West Suffolk Hospital Picture: Joe Giddens/PA WireSusan Warby's husband Jon Warby outside Suffolk Coroners' Court in Ipswich, where an inquest heard that Mr Warby received an anonymous letter highlighting errors in a medical procedure carried out on his wife at the West Suffolk Hospital Picture: Joe Giddens/PA Wire

Lawyers representing the family of Susan Warby, who died five weeks after a bowel operation in 2018, said they are continuing to receive fresh complaints from families of patients cared for at the West Suffolk Hospital.

An inquest into 57-year-old Mrs Warby's death heard a series of mistakes were made during her treatment.

Her husband Jon Warby had received an anonymous letter raising concerns about his wife's care, and the trust is currently being investigated over a so-called 'witch-hunt' to identify the whistleblower, which saw doctors asked for fingerprints.

MORE: Husband 'knocked sideways' by anonymous letter warning of medical blunders

Gurpreet Lalli, medical negligence lawyer at Irwin Mitchell, said: "We are continuing to be instructed by a number of families who have concerns about what happened to their loved ones while under the care of the trust.

"Some of the first-hand accounts we continue to hear are worrying.

West Suffolk Hospital is currently being investigated over a so-called 'witch-hunt' Picture: GREGG BROWNWest Suffolk Hospital is currently being investigated over a so-called 'witch-hunt' Picture: GREGG BROWN

"These follow previous cases where the trust itself has either admitted failings or issues have been identified at official hearings such as inquests.

"Where failings have been identified it is always vital that lessons are learned to improve patient care. Therefore that we are continuing to receive complaints from families is a cause of great concern."

Retired lorry driver's care 'sub-optimal'

The family of Horace Nunn, a retired lorry driver who died in 2016, told lawyers they found out about potential failures in his treatment two months after his death.

The 80-year-old was left paralysed after suffering an epidural haematoma on March 3, 2016 and died in July of that year.

Suffolk's senior coroner Nigel Parsley noted a delay in diagnosis, and said elements of Mr Nunn's care had been "sub-optimal".

However, he said these shortfalls were unlikely to have directly caused his death.

MORE: Hospital criticised over 'witch-hunt' to find botched surgery whistleblower

Trust bosses said they opened a serious incident investigation into Mr Nunn's care after concerns were raised internally about aspects of his treatment.

Mr Nunn's family were informed of this the same day the serious incident was declared, a spokesman said.

NHS chiefs also encouraged any patient or family with any worries to contact the trust's patient advice and liaison service, on 01284 712555 or at PALS@wsh.nhs.uk, so it can fully look into their concerns.

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