Doctors dating patients relatives
Three months later Mrs Gethin died of lung, bone and lymph cancer, at the age of 37.It had taken 18 months to be diagnosed, despite clear symptoms, and only been detected when she was scanned at another hospital.During the hearings, one young nurse, Helene Donnelly, told how she tried to speak out but said: "I'd seen people die, needlessly I think in some cases, but certainly with a lack of dignity or respect, and that was so distressing to me ...it wasn't just once or twice that happened, it was relatively frequently." After she made a complaint, other staff threatened to physically harm her.
Many of the nurses had never been shown how to use basic life-saving equipment, such as cardiac monitors, which identify whether a patient is deteriorating; some turned them off.Desperate relatives told the inquiry, chaired by Robert Francis QC, how patients were left so dehydrated that some began drinking from flower vases.By the time the hospital's failings were exposed by regulators, in 2009, up to 1,200 patients had died needlessly between 20.Over 139 days, the public inquiry into the Stafford hospital scandal has heard testimony from scores of witnesses about how an institution which was supposed to care for the most vulnerable instead became a place of danger.
Decisions about which patients to treat were left to receptionists, inexperienced junior doctors put in charge of critically-ill patients, and nurses switched off equipment because they did not know how to use it.In January 2008, Mr Warriner, died after his intestine was accidentally pierced in an operation for bowel cancer.