Inquests Launched into Deaths of Ian Paterson’s Former Patients, More Cases Under Scrutiny

Inquests Launched into Deaths of Ian Paterson’s Former Patients, More Cases Under Scrutiny

…By Larry John for TDPel Media. A hearing has revealed that at least 36 former patients of disgraced breast surgeon Ian Paterson will have their deaths investigated in upcoming inquests.

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Judge Richard Foster announced that a multi-disciplinary team has reviewed 417 cases of Paterson’s former patients where breast cancer was listed as a cause of death.

While 36 deaths have been confirmed as subject to an inquest, another 21 cases are likely to require further investigation, and an additional 36 cases are yet to be reviewed.

Background on Ian Paterson’s Conviction:

Ian Paterson was found guilty in 2017 of 20 offenses related to unnecessary and unapproved procedures performed on over 1,000 breast cancer patients during a 14-year period.

He is currently serving a 20-year prison sentence.

Paterson’s actions involved carrying out unapproved mastectomies that left behind breast tissue, putting patients at risk of cancer recurrence.

Scope of the Inquests:

The pre-inquest review hearing, held at Birmingham and Solihull Coroner’s Court, shed light on the extensive nature of the investigation.

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The team is considering 130 cases where breast cancer is mentioned as a cause of death in part two of the death certificate.

These cases will help determine whether a thorough review of all 130 cases is necessary.

In addition, there are instances where a patient’s death certificate could not be traced, highlighting the need for next of kin of Paterson’s former patients to come forward.

Concerns and Recommendations:

The inquiry into Paterson’s actions revealed a culture of avoidance and denial within the healthcare system, allowing him to continue harmful surgeries for years.

The report made 15 recommendations to safeguard patients, including recalling over 11,000 patients to determine if they were victims of Paterson’s misconduct.

However, it was only in February 2023 that 1,500 Spire patients were contacted after an examination of legacy IT systems.

Implications of the Inquests:

The ongoing inquests aim to assess whether Paterson’s actions or wider systemic failures contributed to the deaths of his patients.
The proceedings will delve into Paterson’s training, the handling of complaints, and the recall process for his former patients.
Judge Foster emphasized the importance of investigating systemic failings and expressed his commitment to leaving no stone unturned.

Compensation Fund and Further Legal Actions:

A compensation fund has been established for patients treated by Paterson in Spire Healthcare hospitals, managed by Thompsons Solicitors and law firm Slater and Gordon.

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The scandal continues to unfold, with the inquests shedding light on the challenges posed by surgeons operating with impunity in both private and public healthcare sectors.

Conclusion:

The inquests into the deaths of Ian Paterson’s former patients are set to proceed, with at least 36 cases confirmed for investigation.

The hearings will examine whether Paterson’s actions and systemic failures contributed to the patients’ deaths.

The proceedings will also address the concerns raised by the inquiry into Paterson’s misconduct and its impact on the healthcare system.

The inquests mark another milestone in a tragic tale that has affected numerous patients and emphasizes the need for effective measures to prevent such incidents in the future.

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