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NHS trust fined £1.3m over safety failings linked to deaths of two patients

Shrewsbury and Telford Hospital NHS Trust offered its sincere apologies to the families of Max Dingle, 83, and 31-year-old Mohammed Ismael Zaman.

18 May 2022

An NHS trust has been fined £1,333,334 after failing to provide safe care to a pensioner and a dialysis patient at one of its hospitals.

Passing sentence on the Shrewsbury and Telford Hospital NHS Trust, Senior District Judge Paul Goldspring said the families of two patients who died at Royal Shrewsbury Hospital in 2019 and 2020 had suffered “unimaginable grief”.

The judge imposed a fine of £800,000 on one of two charges relating to the death of 31-year-old Mohammed Ismael Zaman, and an additional £533,334 over a charge brought in relation to the death of Max Dingle, 83.

The judge said the offences were aggravated by a fine the trust received in 2016 and a “poor health and safety record in the management of” Royal Shrewsbury Hospital.

NHS maternity inquiry
The charges relate to failings at Royal Shrewsbury Hospital (Jacob King/PA)

He added that the charges were mitigated by the trust carrying out “full and extensive investigations immediately after both incidents”.

The trust, which was recently the subject of a highly critical report into the maternity services it offered between 2000 and 2019, admitted the charges through its barrister at Telford Magistrates’ Court on Wednesday.

The court heard Mr Zaman died after suffering severe blood loss while undergoing dialysis in 2019.

Another charge was brought against the trust by the Care Quality Commission (CQC) over the death of Mr Dingle, who died in May 2020 after his head became trapped between a bed rail and a mattress.

Opening the facts of the case against the trust, the CQC’s lawyer Ryan Donoghue said the failures in care provided to Mr Zaman “were the legal cause of his death, for which the trust is responsible”.

Mr Donoghue added that Mr Dingle’s “head was trapped between the bed rails and mattress” after he was admitted with chronic lung disease.

An alarm was immediately raised when Mr Dingle was found, the court heard, and he was freed, but he died from a cardiac arrest.

Referring to the death of Mr Dingle, Mr Donoghue said: “The basis (of the guilty plea) is that the failures exposed him to a significant risk of avoidable harm.”

An independent review of maternity services, chaired by Donna Ockenden and published in March, found “repeated errors in care” at the trust, which led to injury to either mothers or their babies.

Some 201 babies could have – or would have – survived if the trust had provided better care, the report said.

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