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Hospital negligence claim news – Clinical negligence caused man to dehydrate

11th July 2012

The young man, who was training to be a locksmith and a cobbler, had survived a brain tumour in 2008 and was in St George’s Hospital, Tooting to undergo a routine hip replacement after prescribed steroids had weakened his bones.

He needed the hormone medication in order to control his fluid levels, and hospital staff had been made aware of this several times by the patient and his family. However, they consistently failed to provide him with his medication.

Furthermore, the man’s mother became aware during a phone call from her son that he was being refused water and was agitated and dehydrated because of this.

Desperate for water, the 22-year-old had called the police but when officers arrived at the hospital staff insisted that he was simply in a confused state and sent them away.

The man’s mother states that the day after this particular incident she visited him and “he was lying on the bed on his back. His lips were very swollen and his tongue was swollen. He just looked delirious”.

She claims that at this point, despite telling nurses that there was something wrong with her son, staff still maintained that he was fine.

Worried by the state her son was in, she attracted the attention of a senior doctor making his rounds. She explains, “[The doctor] took one look at [my son] and started to call everyone to come in here quickly.”

Sadly the doctor and other medical staff were unable to save the man’s life. A coroner’s report stated that the cause of death was ‘water deficit’ and ‘hypernatraemia’ (dehydration).

If it is found that the hospital staff are liable for the clinical negligence which resulted in the man’s death, then the deceased’s family could claim medical negligence compensation for their loss should they choose to do so.

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