These short, anonymised stories show the profound impact that failures in public services can have on the lives of individuals and their families.
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1101 case summaries
Failings led to nerve damage following a biopsy
Mrs R complained that a biopsy was not done correctly. She also complained that the risks of the procedure were not properly explained to her.
Summary 1105/September 2015
Practice did not properly monitor prescription of a controlled drug
Mr J was over-prescribed a controlled drug by his GP Practice. When the Practice was made aware of this, the GP declined to issue another prescription on that day. Mr J complained that he suffered withdrawal symptoms as a result.
Summary 1103/September 2015
GP practice gave wrong advice on how to escalate a complaint about it
Mrs A complained about the GP Practice's failure to diagnose and treat her urinary tract infection (UTI) in a reasonable time, and about the attitude of her GP. She also complained about the accuracy of her medical records, about the Practice's complaint handling and its failure to learn from her complaint.
Summary 1102/September 2015
Failings in nursing care and delayed diagnosis
Mrs F experienced poor standards in some aspects of her nursing care. A clinical diagnosis was delayed because facts were not thoroughly considered.
Summary 1100/September 2015
Poor complaint handling contributed to concerns that something had gone wrong
A trust delayed responding to a complainant's concerns and gave mixed messages about whether an investigation was ongoing or not. This led to fears of a cover up.
Summary 1099/September 2015
District nurses failed to provide reasonable care and support
When Mr V was in the final days of his life, the Trust's district nurses failed to provide reasonable care and support to him and his wife.
Summary 1097/September 2015
Poor nursing care for elderly man and poor communication with his family
Mrs G complained about the care and treatment her late uncle, Mr E, received towards the end of his life, including when part of his leg was amputated.
Summary 1095/September 2015
Hospital's mistakes did not have significant impact on patient's care
Mrs J fell ill while on holiday and was taken to hospital. She told staff that she had a cyst (a type of tumour that is not usually cancerous) on one of her ovaries, which might be causing the problem.
Summary 1093/September 2015
Trust did not arrange a CT scan after an elderly patient fell in hospital
Mrs L died shortly after a fall in hospital so her daughter, Mrs K, asked us to investigate her complaint.
Summary 1092/September 2015
Woman with broken arm was given no painkillers in A&E
Miss T complained that when she went to A&E with a broken arm, she was not given any pain relief and that doctors failed to notice a wound on her elbow which subsequently became infected. She also complained she was not given pain relief when she went to A&E again the following week.
Summary 1091/September 2015
Ambulance trust staff caused avoidable pain and distress to elderly fall victim
Ambulance trust staff did not adequately assess an elderly man who had fallen, and failed to give him any pain relief. He was later found to have broken his back.
Summary 1090/September 2015
Missed opportunities to diagnose leukaemia sooner
Mr F's son complained about the care his late father received at the Trust. He said the Trust had not diagnosed and treated his father's leukaemia at the earliest opportunity. He said the delay deprived the family of the opportunity to make Mr F's last days more comfortable and they were unaware of how much he was suffering.
Summary 1089/September 2015
Doctors did not treat heart attack patient appropriately
Mr R was admitted to hospital with a heart attack. His partner complained about the treatment that hospital staff gave him.
Summary 1088/September 2015
Lengthy wait for response to complaint about delayed operation
Mrs S complained about the care she received after two operations, and that planned surgery was cancelled twice.
Summary 1087/September 2015
Trust failed to adequately manage child's pain after appendix operation
Mr B complained that his daughter's appendectomy procedure was delayed. He also said that after the operation there had been a delay giving her a catheter, and that her pain was not appropriately managed. Mr B said that the Trust's complaint handling was poor.
Summary 1086/September 2015
Trust failed to follow policy after patient fell out of bed
Mr D's wife complained about the care her husband received after a fall at home. She believed her husband died as a direct result of the poor care he received in hospital. She was extremely distressed by the possibility that his death could have been avoided.
Summary 1085/September 2015
Patient with cancer was inappropriately given a laxative for over a month
Mr H received some poor care and treatment, including being given Senna (a laxative) when he had diarrhoea. His wife complained about poor nursing care and a lack of documentation about the care given.
Summary 1084/September 2015
Faults in nursing, communication and complaint handling
Mrs E complained about a surgical procedure that resulted in a prolonged hospital stay. She also raised concerns about nursing care and the way the Trust communicated with her, as well as its complaint handling.
Summary 1083/September 2015
Shortfalls in Trust's discharge processes
Ms R complained about the care her late mother, Mrs F, received from the Trust before she died. She felt that her mother's death was avoidable.
Summary 1082/September 2015
Failings in care did not change the outcome for a patient with diabetes
Mr P is diabetic. He complained about poor care and treatment during several hospital admissions, which he believed resulted in the need for further amputation surgery.
Summary 1081/September 2015
Doctors could not have predicted that a woman with ovarian cancer would have died as quickly as she did
Ms L complained that her mother, Mrs K, was not diagnosed sooner with ovarian cancer by her GP and doctors, and that subsequent hospital care, including pain relief, was poor. Ms L also complained that doctors overestimated how much time her mother had left to live and consequently did not urge Ms L to return home from her holiday sooner. Ms L said the Trust took too long to answer her complaint.
Summary 1080/September 2015
Failure to provide appropriate care for a cancer patient who suffered a major fit and died
Mr A, who was in his late seventies and in good health, was on holiday abroad with his wife. He developed abdominal pains and they decided to come home.
Summary 1079/September 2015
Fatal blood clot could have been prevented
An older woman died of a preventable pulmonary embolism (a blood clot in the artery from the heart to the lungs), but she would have died from a heart attack even if the embolism had not developed.
Summary 1077/September 2015
Lack of patient observations and poor record keeping
Mrs K complained about the care and treatment given to her daughter, Mrs Y, who died three days after having a caesarean section.
Summary 1075/September 2015
Trust did not meet woman's nutritional needs
Ms Q complained that the Trust did not give her mother, Mrs U, enough food and drink during several hospital admissions; discharged her from hospital when she was unfit; and put her on the Liverpool Care Pathway (a way of managing her care at the end of her life) without telling her family. Ms Q also complained about the way the Trust communicated with her.
Summary 1074/September 2015
Trust diagnosed Alzheimer's disease in reasonable time
The time taken to assess, diagnose and give medication to a patient with Alzheimer's disease was appropriate and delays could not be attributed to Trust.
Summary 1073/August 2015
GP practice gave poor standard of blood-thinning treatment
Staff took too long to get the dose of a blood-thinning medicine right, and should have discussed Mrs R's care with senior staff.
Summary 1072/August 2015
Dentist gave inappropriate treatment at patient's request
Mr J insisted on a certain kind of temporary treatment for his tooth and the dentist went ahead with it, although she should have refused to do this and treated Mr J correctly.
Summary 1071/August 2015
Trust did not communicate well with carer, which caused unnecessary distress
There were failings in the way nursing staff communicated with a stroke patient's carer, and they did not give her appropriate information about her rights.
Summary 1070/August 2015
13-hour wait in A&E before transfer to medical unit
Hospital took too long to transfer patient from A&E to the acute medical unit. Staff then moved him to a ward but didn't tell his family.
Summary 1069/August 2015
Failure to follow Mental Health Act Code of Practice
Doctors did not assess whether Mr B had the capacity to make decisions for himself, so he did not have information about taking a drug with side effects.
Summary 1068/August 2015
Poor nursing care for a disabled man
Staff did not carry out required assessments and risk planning, and senior nursing staff failed to identify serious incidents on two occasions.
Summary 1067/August 2015
Trust did not follow guidance for investigating hip pain
Trust failed to follow guidance for one aspect of its care and treatment of a lady who fell and sustained fractures to her wrist and pelvis.
Summary 1066/August 2015
Hospital unfairly detained man under the Mental Capacity Act
A hospital held Mr M for 24 hours until a psychiatrist could see him, when it should have assessed him immediately.
Summary 1065/August 2015
Nursing home did not tell son about his mother's discharge from hospital
Mrs W was discharged back to a nursing home after being in hospital but staff at the home did not tell her son until about four hours after she had arrived. She died soon afterwards.
Summary 1064/August 2015
Dental practice did not tell patient why it stopped treating him
Mr F wanted a specialist procedure done at the Dental Surgery but the dentists said it could not be done. The Surgery eventually decided to stop treating him, but did not tell him why.
Summary 1063/August 2015
Missed opportunities to treat two-year-old child
Doctors missed several opportunities to treat child before his cardiac arrest and gave him the wrong dose of a controlled antibiotic.
Summary 1062/August 2015
Poor root canal treatment caused pain
Mr D said his Dental Practice inadequately completed a root canal procedure and did not give him antibiotics for an infection. He said that he lost two teeth because of this.
Summary 1061/August 2015
Possible missed opportunity to prevent suicide
Miss J was admitted to the Trust following her third suicide attempt. But the Trust failed to manage the risks to her health appropriately, and Miss J took her own life a few days later.
Summary 1060/August 2015
Hospital missed opportunities to save man's sight
Mr G went to the Trust's emergency Eye Clinic with complications after an eye operation. He had treatment but lost the sight in his eye and is now registered as severely sight impaired.
Summary 1059/August 2015
Specialist cancer care may have helped with pain
Miss J thought her mother was dying, and so felt her hospital treatment was unnecessary and that she should have been given palliative care.
Summary 1056/August 2015