Patient dies after six month surgery delay

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The Warrington and Halton Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust has issued an apology after Denis Harrison, 62, died after waiting six months for surgery.

Mr Harrison was diagnosed with bladder cancer in October 2016 and according to the NHS guidelines should have received treatment by the following February.

In March he went to hospital after noticing that his leg had started to swell. The staff present did not carry out a scan, and as a result it was not detected that his cancer had spread.

The following month he was operated on, however the surgery was stopped after doctors became aware that the cancer had spread.

The Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman (PHSO) said that although it cannot be proved that earlier surgery would have saved Mr Harrison’s life, the trust did not act urgently enough and as a result the patient was not given the best possible chance of survival.

Michele Benjamin, a chartered legal executive in the Medical Negligence team at Ashtons Legal comments: “This was a sad case whereby the guidelines were not put in place and as a result a patient has lost his life. Although it is not possible to ascertain whether earlier surgery would have helped him, he was not given the best possible chance of survival. The trust failed to act with appropriate urgency and it is essential that in the future they adhere to the guidelines and also take action to improve their services immediately.”

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