Hospital trust apologises for Dagenham gran’s ‘avoidable’ cancer death
- Credit: Family handout
A hospital trust has apologised to the family of a Dagenham grandmother whose painful death from bladder cancer the NHS watchdog ruled “avoidable”.
Pamela North, 73, died two years ago this Friday following a nine-month failure to diagnose her.
Now her son James is telling her story to encourage others to come forward if their loved ones have received the wrong care.
“The only way for justice to be done is that they make sure nothing happens to anyone else,” he told the Post.
“The damage is already done for us, to be honest, and the apology doesn’t really mean a thing.”
You may also want to watch:
Pamela, a grandmother of eight, had been referred to King George Hospital in Goodmayes by her GP back in February 2015. Despite going to hospital several times for a number of tests which showed symptoms of cancer, doctors did not spot her condition until the last few weeks of her life.
All this time she suffered the painful effects of kidney failure. Prompt treatment, which would have seen her receive chemotherapy and radiotherapy treatment, would have given her a 70 per cent chance of life.
- 1 Man stabbed in front of son, 12, in 'unprovoked, violent' attack in Barking
- 2 Jailed: Man whose drunken knife attack left one dead and woman injured at Dagenham dinner party
- 3 Election 2021: Live updates for GLA seat and Thames by-election
- 4 Appeal to help find missing girl who may be in Dagenham, Ilford or Stratford
- 5 Guilty: 'Depraved' rapist who targeted and robbed lone women at night
- 6 Barking shisha bar was wrongly shut down for Covid breaches, owner claims
- 7 Barking Riverside homeowners urge developer to cover cost of decking replacements
- 8 Police patrols increase at Dagenham Tube stations
- 9 12 countries announced on travel green list from May 17
- 10 Man shot in the face in Dagenham
An “annoyed”, “stressed” James, 48, made a complaint to Barking, Havering and Redbridge University Hospitals NHS Trust, which runs King George. Their investigation, according to the Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman (PHSO) “did not take responsibility for these failings” or acknowledge whether Pamela could have survived if provided with the right care and treatment.
In April last year the Ombudsman “fully upheld” James’ complaint, ordering the trust to “formally apologise for the failings in his mother’s care and treatment”.
The trust also agreed to pay James £10,000, which the family donated to Saint Francis Hospice, who cared for their mother in her final moments.
“It was never about the money, anyway,” he said. “It was about a little bit of justice, to be honest.”
A spokeswoman for the trust reiterated an apology for the “distress” caused to the North family.
“We accept that we fell short of the quality of care we aspire to, and that the complaints process did not provide them with the appropriate reassurance,” she said, adding that “significant progress” had been made in the last two years.