Laura Booth attended the Royal Hallamshire Hospital in Sheffield for a routine eye operation and unfortunately died in October 2016 of ‘natural causes’; but an inquest will now review her case to see if malnutrition contributed to her death.
Laura Booth’s parents say that her death was due to the failure of the Royal Hallamshire Hospital to properly understand her disability. Laura had stopped eating whilst in hospital following her operation, but the hospital staff did not fit a Total Parenteral Nutrition (TPN) line in response to this. Despite Laura’s parents raising concerns about her deterioration, the TPN line was only introduced on the day that she died, which they believe was too late in order to save her.
The Royal Hallamshire Hospital have said that they are sorry that some aspects of Laura’s overall care fell below the standard that they normally expect, but that she was regularly reviewed and given nutritional supplements.
The family have raised their concerns with the coroner, which now means that an inquest will be held in Sheffield to review the reason for Laura’s death. The outcome of the inquest may determine whether there was more that the hospital could have done to save her.
One of the main concerns raised by Laura’s father was that hospital staff allegedly said they were not used to people like Laura coming to the Royal Hallamshire Hospital. Mencap, a mental health charity, is now calling on the NHS and the government to make sure every medical and healthcare professional is fully trained in dealing with learning disabilities before they are able to work in a hospital.
This is an incredibly sad case and we hope that Laura’s family get the answers that they deserve from the inquest and that lessons will be learnt from her story. If the review shows that malnutrition significantly contributed to Laura’s death then her estate may be eligible to bring a claim for medical negligence against the NHS Trust.
Jordans have a specialist medical negligence team dealing claims when a patient has suffered harm due to the negligent actions of medical professionals. Our team can also provide support and representation to those who are unfortunate enough to have to attend an inquest; helping them get answers and some form of closure following a tragic event. If you would like to speak to one of our specialists then call 01924457171 to speak to our medical negligence team today.