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Coroner to further investigate hospital deaths

[Press center 1] time:2023-06-02 03:21:21 source:BBC News (British Broadcasting Corporation) author:Press center 1 click:140order

The deaths of four patients at Ysbyty Glan Clwyd is to be investigated further by a coroner.

A review this year found the deaths weren't fully declared to the coroner by Betsi Cadwaladr Health Board.

Inquests were opened by coroner John Gittins in Ruthin, Denbighshire, on Tuesday.

Keith Hyde, Edmund Jones, Alan George and Anthony Clemett were all being treated at the hospital for blood vessel and circulation problems.

It was decided to centralise vascular services there in 2019, despite concerns about moving complex procedures from Wrexham Maelor Hospital and Ysbyty Gwynedd.

Retired maintenance worker Keith Hyde, from Rhyl, in Denbighshire, died on 5 December 2020; retired engineer Edmund Jones, from Rhyl, died on 22 November 2020; retired electrician Alan George, from Holywell, Flintshire, died on 15 December 2020 and retired teacher Anthony Clemett, of Meifod, Powys, died on 1 January 2021.

In February a Royal College of Surgeons report raised urgent recommendations "to address patient safety risks".

Mr Gittins told the court the cases were referred to him following reviews the health board had asked for, which looked at the clinical records of 44 patients regarding concerns around vascular care and treatment.

He said: "The review identified four cases which the health board decided should be given my further consideration and appropriately so."

He said initial inquiries found that it wasn't necessary for him to conduct further investigations into the deaths.

But he said: "As is sometimes the case there can be unnatural elements associated with a natural cause of death, and additional information from the health board review and medical records, plus concerns in relation to vascular services, resulted in my view that these were now matters best dealt with by further investigation and should take place by way of the opening of a coroner's inquest."

The coroner said he would deal with the cases individually but there would be an examination of all cases of a similar nature in relation to vascular services.

The inquests were adjourned to future dates.

(editor-in-charge:Press center5)

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