Colchester Hospital worst in England for ‘never’ incidents
Residents in Harlow may be shocked to hear that Colchester Hospital Trust was rated the worst in England for ‘never’ incidents over the past year. The Trust runs Essex County Hospital and Colchester General Hospital. A representative for the Trust defended the ‘no blame’ policy within the organisation claiming that it allowed them to learn from their mistakes. In the report by NHS England, another Essex hospital, Mid Essex Hospital Services, came third in the list for ‘never’ incidents for the same period.
The Colchester Hospital University NHS Trust was already placed into special measures by the Care Quality Commission, which rated it ‘inadequate’ in several areas. In response to the report, the Trust said that they had the goodwill of the community, cared for hundreds of thousands of patients each year and that they usually got the treatment right. It was their aim to be open about their mistakes and to use them as opportunities for improvement.
“Never events” refers to hospital incidents that should never occur. They include mistakes where surgeons operate on the wrong part of the patient’s body, leave items inside a patient’s body or insert an incorrect implant. For the period of 2014 to 2015, the Colchester Hospital Trust had nine recorded incidents of ‘never events,’ including three wrong site cases. The Patients Association commented that events such as wrong site surgery were a major risk to patient welfare and were unacceptable.
Wrong site surgery is a type of medical error that can cause serious injury or death to the patient and is considered to be wholly preventable. A solicitor familiar with medical negligence law may be able to help a client understand whether they have grounds for a claim and guide them through the process. This may include a review of the client’s medical records or even an independent medical examination.