Settlement for the family of a woman who died after delayed treatment led to sepsis

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Amanda Cavanagh has achieved a six-figure settlement for the family of Mrs X, who died following a hospital’s 53-hour delay in identifying and treating an infected leg ulcer which developed into sepsis.

Mrs X was already receiving antibiotic treatment for the leg ulcer, which was not effective. On admission to A&E, her blood results suggested that an inflammatory process was happening, but this was not investigated further.

On several occasions, the hospital records note that Mrs X’s condition was likely due to an infection, but the various treating departments within the hospital failed to consult each other to determine the correct treatment plan and medication.

Mrs X’s condition deteriorated to the level she required intensive care, and the hospital failed to act on her worsening symptoms.

The hospital admitted that it failed to consult with its internal departments and, as a result, failed to transfer Mrs X to Intensive Care despite there being a plan to do so. However, the hospital alleged that even with earlier treatment, Mrs X would not have survived. The expert evidence obtained by Mrs X’s family refuted this allegation, and a settlement was agreed between the parties.

Amanda comments: “I am glad that I was able to help Mrs X and her family, who have all suffered a huge loss because of a breakdown in communication which led to a to a failure to identify and treat sepsis, but nothing can compensate for the loss of a loved one particularly where the death could have been avoided.”

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