Ombudsman finds ‘catalogue of errors’ led to grandmother’s death in routine hip operation

26 February 2019 – NHE

A Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman (PHSO) investigation into a ‘low risk’ hip replacement operation in 2015 found a series of errors that led to the “avoidable” death of Renie Craig.

East Lancashire Hospitals NHS Trust apologised and said it has made significant improvements to its services to ensure “similar errors do not happen again.”

Renie Craig had the hip operation in February 2015 despite having high blood pressure and an impaired kidney, and after the surgery she was not given enough fluids – with her fluid balance failing to be monitored despite a doctor requesting so.

The Ombudsman said her age and the fact that she had diabetes meant that she was at an increased risk of developing a serious kidney injury.

When Renie’s blood pressure “dropped significantly”, nurses failed to inform a senior doctor and following a blood transfusion and two further operations, she died in March.

The ombudsman upheld a complaint, finding that the Trust failed to check Craig’s risk of developing acute kidney injuries, and the subsequent monitoring of her condition was “inadequate.”

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