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Burnham: NHS has had 'worst week in living memory'

The Shadow Health Secretary says thousands of patients are being put at risk and the NHS has had its "worst week in living memory".

Andy Burnham has criticised the government over waiting figures Credit: PA Images

“These figures show the Tory A&E crisis is intensifying and putting thousands of patients at risk.

“Last week was the worst week the NHS has experienced in living memory.

“Over 16,000 people had to wait on trolleys in corridors – a staggering 29 per cent increase on the previous worst two weeks earlier.

“David Cameron’s failure to produce a plan to deal with this cannot carry on. Their complacency is exposing far too many vulnerable people to too much risk.

“Labour has today issued a five point plan and we call on the Government to adopt it without delay.”

– Andy Burnham MP, Shadow Health Secretary

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Bail extended for man arrested in connection with Stepping Hill hospital poisonings

Officers are also investigating the tampering of medical records at the hospital in January 2012.

Greater Manchester Police has extended the bail of a man arrested in connection with the investigation into the deliberate contamination of products and tampering of medical records at Stepping Hill Hospital.

The force is investigating the contamination of various products with insulin between 1 June 2011 and 15 July 2011.

Twenty-two people were subsequently poisoned by the contaminated products, seven of whom have since died.

They are Tracey Arden, 44, Arnold Lancaster, 71, Derek Weaver, 83, William Dickson, 82, Linda McDonagh, 60, John Beeley, 73 and Beryl Hope, 70.

The 46-year-old man, arrested in connection with the deaths of three patients, the deliberate poisoning of 18 other patients and the tampering of medical records, has had his bail extended until 31 January 2013.

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Hospital determined poisoning doesn't overshadow 'record of good care'

"Our staff are determined that this criminal and malicious event does not overshadow the hospital's long-standing record of good care and we are grateful for the outstanding support for our community.

"The police investigation may be ongoing, but we have always been clear that the deplorable act of deliberate contamination does not reflect on the good care provided by our skilled and dedicated staff."

– Judith Morris, director of nursing and midwifery, Stockport NHS Foundation Trust

Stepping Hill police trying to 'understand and prove how each person was poisoned' at hospital

"We have set ourselves the task of understanding and proving how each person was poisoned, how and if this caused or contributed to their deaths and obviously who is responsible.

"To that end we are making good progress but it won't be until the very end of the criminal or coronial process that these questions will be properly answered.

"Ultimately our aim is to ensure justice for all victims.

"The sheer size and complexity of this investigation is reflected in the number of inquiries that we have done, those still to do and the specialism surrounding all medical evidence and the invaluable and necessary involvement of the various experts who are supporting and assisting us.

"I want to take the opportunity to thank all the staff at Stepping Hill.

"I know the past 12 months have been an extremely difficult and challenging time for them but they have offered us their full and unwavering support throughout.

"It is important to note that we continue to work with them regarding the safeguarding of patients and since we were alerted back in July last year no other products have been contaminated."

– Detective Superintendent Simon Barraclough, Greater Manchester Police