– Sarah Huntbach, senior associate at Anthony Collins Solicitors
Gillian Astbury’s case is a particularly serious example of clinical negligence, with an inquest in 2010 ruling a judgment of gross neglect.
We hope that the HSE’s investigation will ensure that the individuals responsible for how Mid Staffordshire NHS Foundation Trust was managed at the time of Gillian Astbury’s death are held to account.
What is essential to Mrs Astbury’s family is that answers are given as to why this level of neglect was allowed to occur and that the investigation helps to bring about measures which prevent cases of this nature from happening again.
A criminal investigation has begun into the death of a diabetic woman who died at Stafford Hospital exactly 6 years ago after staff failed to give her insulin.
Gillian Astbury, who was 66 and from Hednesford in Staffordshire, went into hospital with a broken arm in April 2007, but died days later.
Her partner Ron Street today welcomed the news that the Health & Safety Executive is investigating, now the public inquiry into standards of care at the Mid Staffordshire NHS Trust is complete. Chris Halpin reports.
Ron Street, who's diabetic partner Gillian Astbury died at Stafford Hospital in 2007 after staff failed to give her insulin, says he hopes to get answers from a new Health & Safety Executive investigation into her death.
A criminal investigation has started into the death of a diabetic woman at Stafford Hospital. Gillian Astbury died six years ago after staff failed to administer insulin. Callum Watkinson reports.
– Julie Hendry, Director of Quality and Patient Experience at Mid Staffordshire NHS Foundation Trust
I would like to offer our sincere condolences to the family of Gillian Astbury for their sad loss and apologise for the appalling care Ms Astbury received at our hospital in April 2007.
Ms Astbury’s death was reported as a serious untoward incident at the time and a full investigation into her care and treatment was carried out.
The recommendations from that investigation were implemented.
In 2010 we reviewed Ms Astbury’s dreadful care and as a result, disciplinary action was taken.
An Health and Safety (HSE) spokesman says their inspectors have formally started an investigation.
– HSE spokesman
'Following legal advice, HSE deferred a decision to pursue the investigation into Gillian Astbury's death until the conclusion of the public inquiry, chaired by Robert Francis QC, into Mid Staffordshire NHS Foundation Trust'.
– HSE spokesman
'We can now confirm that our inspectors have today formally started an investigation.
"Our focus will be on establishing whether there is evidence of the employer (the Trust) or individuals failing to comply with their responsibilities under the Health and Safety at Work Act'.
The report by Robert Francis QC highlighted 'appalling and unnecessary suffering of hundreds of people' at the Mid Staffordshire NHS Foundation Trust between 2005 and 2009.
As many as 1,200 patients are thought to have died needlessly after they were 'routinely neglected' at Stafford Hospital.
Many were left lying in their own urine and excrement for days. Some were forced to drink water from vases or given the wrong medication.
An inquest into her death found that failure to administer insulin amounted to a gross failure to provide basic care.
The Health and Safety Executive said a criminal investigation has begun into the death of diabetic Gillian Astbury at Stafford Hospital in 2007.