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Morecambe Bay NHS Trust apologises to families

Morecambe Bay NHS Foundation Trust have apologised "unreservedly" to the families who suffered as a result of failures in one of its hospital's "seriously dysfunctional" maternity units.

Morecambe Bay NHS Foundation Trust has apologised over failings at its Furness General Hospital in Barrow, Cumbria Credit: PA

Pearse Butler, Chair of the Trust Board, said: "This Trust made some very serious mistakes in the way it cared for mothers and their babies. More than that, the same mistakes were repeated. And after making those mistakes, there was a lack of openness from the Trust in acknowledging to families what had happened.

"For these reasons, on behalf of the Trust, I apologise unreservedly to the families concerned. I'm deeply sorry that so many people have suffered as a result of these mistakes."

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Kirkup: 'Disturbing catalogue of missed opportunities'

The Chairman of the Morecambe Bay Investigation, Dr Bill Kirkup, has said there was a "disturbing catalogue of missed opportunities" at Morecambe Bay NHS Foundation Trust.

He said had proper investigations into serious incidents been conducted as far back as 2004 it would have raised the alarm about the level of maternity and paediatric care being provided.

Dr Bill Kirkup

He said: "There was a disturbing catalogue of missed opportunities, initially and most significantly by the Trust but subsequently involving the North West Strategic Health Authority, the Care Quality Commission, Monitor, the Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman and the Department of Health.

"Over the next three years, there were at least seven opportunities to intervene that were missed. The result was that no effective action was taken until the beginning of 2012."

Kirkup added that the trust should acknowledge and apologise for what happened at Furness General Hospital.

Dave Whelan steps down as Wigan chairman

Dave Whelan has resigned as chairman of Wigan Athletic and appointed his 23-year-old grandson, David Sharpe, as his successor.

Whelan has stepped down as Wigan chairman. Credit: PA

Whelan steps down after 20 years with the club nine points adrift from safety in the Championship and facing up to relegation into England's third tier.

In December 2014, he was banned for six weeks by the FA and fined £50,000 for racist comments he made about Jewish and Chinese people.

A club statement confirmed:

Mr Whelan’s grandson David Sharpe will be formally elected as new Chairman of Wigan Athletic by the Board of Directors at a date to be confirmed soon, and will be assisted in the running of the club by Chief Executive Jonathan Jackson.

– Wigan club statement

Contract between hospital and patients was broken

A contract between healthcare professionals and patients to be 'open and honest' when things went wrong was broken, the Chairman of the Morecambe Bay Investigation said today.

As a result of the broken contract there were 20 incidents of significant failings of care in Furness which may have contributed to the deaths of three mothers and 16 babies, Doctor Bill Kirkup said today.

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