Bedsore in hospital leads to apology for medical negligence


The NHS Highland health board has made an "unreserved apology" to a patient who developed a large bedsore while recovering from an operation last year.

NHS Highland said that "sub standard" nursing care at Raigmore Hospital in Inverness caused the pressure ulcer.

Medical Negligence

After the case was raised by the Scottish Public Services Ombudsman's Office, NHS Highland chief executive Elaine Mead said she deeply regretted the pain and distress caused to the patient.

"Today we have issued an unreserved written apology to a patient as a result of the poor care they received while in Raigmore Hospital last year."

"I deeply regret the pain and distress experienced because we failed to provide the standard of care required."

"While I welcome the independent review by the ombudsman's office, I am also disappointed that we didn't handle the original complaint as well as we should have, causing further unnecessary upset."

NHS Highland said a "robust action plan" being implemented across its sites, including ward rounds by senior nurses to ensure early action to prevent pressure sores and the appointment in June 2011 of a specialist nurse.

Welcoming the health board's apology, Neil Fearn of Simpson Millar LLP said that medical negligence covered a wide range of issues. "At a time when we're used to hugely significant cases of medical negligence, often causing loss of life, it's important to remember that the term covers instances which might seem modest in comparison. But this doesn't mean to say they shouldn't be taken as seriously as any other medical oversight."

"Further bed sores are very painful and distressing. They should not happen and are a clear indication of inadequate and poor nursing practice."

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