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  1. ITV Report

Blind RAF veteran died after he was given the wrong patient's pills by 'under-pressure' Boots staff

  • Video report by ITV News Anglia's Tanya Mercer

An inquest has heard how an RAF veteran died after under-pressure staff at a busy Boots pharmacy in Felixstowe supplied him with another patient's prescription.

Douglas Lamond, 86, who was registered blind, received his weekly medicines in pill boxes assembled at his pharmacy with tablets separated into different plastic compartments to take on different days.

But on May 10, 2012, Mr Lamond was wrongly dispensed the anti-diabetic drug Gliclazide - used to lower blood sugar levels - and did not receive his usual prescription of Bisoprolol - a beta-blocker - due to an error.

The inquest heard it was this "very significant accidental dispensing error which resulted in him receiving another patient's medication".

Douglas Lamond, 86, died in May 2012, two days after a pack of drugs was delivered to his home Credit: ITV News Anglia

Dispenser Susan Hazelwood told the inquest she had made the dispensing error on a day when the pharmacy was "very busy", and the responsible pharmacist on duty Mihaela Seceleanu did not notice the mistake when completing checks.

Ms Hazelwood told the Coroner's Court weekly pill boxes were made up every four weeks and stored on shelves before being delivered but Mr Lamond's prescription changed and he required extra pills so she slit open a completed box, which she believed was for him, and added the pills.

She had actually accidentally picked up a completed box for another patient with a similar surname.

The pharmacist working on the day, Miheala Seceleanu, said she checked the pills but not the details of the pill box.

In a written statement she said “I didn’t spot this. I will forever regret this mistake”

Mr Lamond died from the combined effects of his serious pre-existing medical conditions and the consequences of a very significant accidental dispensing error which resulted in him receiving another patient’s medication instead of his own thus depriving him of his necessary prescribed medication for several days leading to heart failure.

– Dr Peter Dean, Coroner