Coroner attacks Jeremy Hunt after teen bleeds to death due to hospital blunder

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Coroner attacks Jeremy Hunt after teen bleeds to death due to hospital blunder
Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt (Picture: David Mirzoeff/PA Wire)

A coroner has hit out at Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt after a teenage boy bleed to death following a hospital error.

Harrison Heath bled to death while in one of the safest hospitals in the UK.

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A doctor punctured the wrong blood vessel with a needle after ultrasound equipment to ensure the needle was placed correctly was not used.

Eight doctors at the hospital in Congleton, Cheshire, then failed to spot the 16-year-old’s internal bleeding, believing he had sepsis.

He died after losing over two-and-a-half litres of blood in a two day period, something that wouldn’t have happened had the error not occurred or if the doctors spotted the internal bleeding in time, an inquest heard.

South Manchester coroner, John Pollard, said he will be writing to Jeremy Hunt following the hearing, however he fears the letter will be added to a large pile of complaints that will ‘never get looked at again’.

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‘If we send it with a realistic problem and a realistic suggestion for a solution they might for once as politicians talk about it, in among the other issues they have at the House of Commons.

‘It is not something that is going to cost huge amounts of money, most hospitals have access to ultrasound equipment.’

He added: ‘It seems to me that this is a bit of a hit-and-miss procedure with a real risk of catastrophic consequences if the wrong vessel is punctured.

‘If this procedure is something that is happening on a national basis then this is something in the UK that needs to be addressed.’

Following Harrison’s death last December Dr Souhyb Masri, who carried out the incision, has changed his procedure.

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