January 15, 2013

Starving patients to death

It's appalling what's happening in Britain and with the National Health Service.  'Normalization of cruelty' indeed.

Hospital apologizes to 38 families for appalling care that saw a patient starve to death   

Alexandra Hospital in Redditch is writing to 38 families after a massive legal action that exposed years of bad practice, ranging from nurses taunting patients to leaving an elderly woman unwashed for 11 weeks.

In one of the worst cases, a man had starvation recorded as the cause of his death after being treated at the hospital for two months.
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Jeremy Hunt, the Health Secretary, said last night that he was “disgusted and appalled” by what the families had been through, and that the Government was acting to ensure that failings in care were detected more quickly.

Bereaved relatives had told how vulnerable patients were left to starve when trays were placed out of their reach, while others were left in soaking bedsheets.

Many of the families are to receive compensation for cases that their lawyer described as “appalling”.

The move will serve to intensify debate on why some nurses and doctors are treating patients without compassion, and will add weight to the warning by Mr Hunt that patients can experience “coldness, resentment, indifference” and “even contempt” in NHS hospitals.

He warned that in the worst institutions, a “normalisation of cruelty” had been fostered.
Posted by Jill Fallon at January 15, 2013 3:13 AM | Permalink