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Campaigner welcomes hospital inquiry

Gillian Mackenzie Credit: ITV Meridian

The family of a victim who died at the Gosport War Memorial Hospital has welcomed the announcement that there will be an inquiry into their deaths.

Gillian Mackenzie whose mother died at the Gosport hospital describes it as the culmination of sixteen years hard work and campaigning.

She has met with Norman Lamb on numerous occasions in pursuit of her campaign for justice.

She has also been to see the Rt Rev James Jones who will chair the inquiry.

Ms Mackenzie told ITV News Meridian that she wants the inquiry to be "full uncompromising and exhaustive" and wants to see criminal prosecutions follow.

"I have waited sixteen years for this" she says "and I have not got another sixteen yearsleft"


Gosport victim's daughter welcomes inquiry

The family of a victim who died at the Gosport War Memorial Hospital has welcomed the announcement that there will be an inquiry into their deaths.

Gillian Mackenzie whose mother died at the Gosport hospital describes it as the culmination of sixteen years hard work and campaigning.

She has also paid tribute to Stephen Lloyd MP who has lobbied on her behalf. Gladys Richards died on August 21 1998. She was 91.

Subsequently Gillian Mackenzie became the first concerned relative to contact the police after the death of a patient at the GWMH.

Health department sets up panel into Gosport inquiry

The Department of Health has responded to the publication of death rates at Gosport War Memorial Hospital by setting up a panel.

Norman Lamb has released a statement in reaction to the Baker Report released in August 2013 into the expected death rates of elderly patients at a Gosport hospital.

The deaths happened between 1988 and 2000 and families have continued to raise concerns about the initial care of their relatives.

The statement says:

"In order to try and address their concerns, and having given consideration to a number of alternative options, I am setting up an independent panel to review the documentary evidence held across a range of organisations.

I have asked Bishop James Jones to chair the panel. Having successfully steered the Hillsborough panel, he brings a wealth of expertise and experience to this work. He has begun to work with affected families, and will continue to do so over the coming weeks and months to ensure that the views of those most affected by these deaths are taken into account. I have also asked Christine Gifford, a recognised expert in the field of access to information, to work alongside him and the various organisations to ensure maximum possible disclosure of the documentary evidence to the panel.

– Norman Lamb, Minister of State, Department of Health

"Hillsborough" style inquiry into deaths at hospital

A formal review has been launched into a number of suspicious deaths at the Gosport War Memorial Hospital in Hampshire.

Care and Support Minister Norman Lamb announced that an inquiry is to be held into the deaths of a number of elderly patients at the hospital between 1988 and 2000.

The investigation will be led by former bishop of Liverpool the Rt Rev James Jones, who previously chaired the Hillsborough Independent Panel into the disaster.

He has already started work with the affected families.

The investigation, which is expected to take around two years, will review the evidence held by a number of organisations, Mr Lamb said.

The terms of reference for the review will be published in the autumn.

Norman Lamb said:

The events at Gosport War Memorial hospital have caused immense distress to the families of the patients who died. I was deeply concerned by the findings of the Baker report, and I am confident that the appointment of Bishop James Jones to chair this independent process will help answer the many questions of the families affected by these shocking events."

– Norman Lamb, Care and Support Minister

Statement to the House of Commons by Health Secretary, Jeremy Hunt MP on Gosport War Memorial Hospital inquiry

Health Secretary, Jeremy Hunt, will outline the scope of the inquiry in a Commons statement Credit: PA Wire

A written statement will be delivered to the House of Commons today by the Secretary of State for Health, Jeremy Hunt. The Surrey South West MP's announcement follows years of campaigning from the relatives of those who died at the Gosport War Memorial Hospital in Hampshire during the 1990s.

It's believed the inquiry has been commissioned by the care minister, Norman Lamb MP, who has asked the former Bishop of Liverpool to investigate after an audit on the number of deaths at the hospital more than fifteen years ago.

Relatives of many who died believe they were prescribed painkillers, including morphine and other powerful drugs, to shorten their lives, even if they were not in pain. Local MP, Caroline Dinenage, has joined calls for more information about what happened at the hospital.

In 2003 a report was published into the medical regime at the hospital. It had been commissioned by the Chief Medical Officer after concerns were first raised in 1998. It was coordinated by Professor Richard Baker from the University of Leicester.

His report concluded that there was an almost routine use of opiates and evidence of the practice had been found from as early as 1998. He said it shortened the lives of some patients - a small number of who would have been discharged from the hospital alive. He made a number of recommendations:

These included that investigations into the deaths of individual patients should continue. He also asked for the rota patterns of doctors working at the hospital at the time should be examined to explore the pattern of deaths.

He also said hospital teams who care for patients at the end of the lives should have explicit policies on the use of opiate medication and that there should be national guidelines to help develop local policies.


Inquiry into deaths at Gosport War Memorial Hospital

Concerns were raised into the deaths of elderly patients at Gosport War Memorial Hospital Credit: PA

A Hillsborough-style inquiry is to be set up investigate up to 100 deaths at the Gosport War Memorial Hospital.

Relatives of elderly patients who died at the hospital during the 1990s have long campaigned for an inquiry and it is expected to announced by the Government today.

Concerns were first raised about the use of opiates among elderly patients at the hospital.

Led by the Right Rev James Jones, the former Bishop of Liverpool, the inquiry will examine cases at the hospital dating back to 1991.

Students compete in human-powered submarine race

The submarine race sees nearly 100 students go head-to-head underwater Credit: eISR

Students are used to competing against other universities but today will see a different kind of race - with students furiously pedalling in submarines along the sea bed.

It's all part of an international submarine race in Gosport in what is Europe's biggest covered water freshwater space.

Students from universities around the world will battle to win this unique engineering and sporting event - where pilots in SCUBA gear pedal in a huge tank the size of a football pitch.

Competing teams have come from Canada, Germany, Netherlands, New Zealand, USA as well as Bath, Plymouth and Warwick.

Coffee morning raises thousands with popstar's support

I expected to do a coffee morning with a few cakes and raise around £500. We just couldn’t believe it when the money kept going up and up – we were texting each other saying can you believe this is happening. The big hit for us was Billy Ocean supporting us – he was so lovely and it really kick-started everything. It was very humbling because everyone we met had a connection with cancer in some way and there was no-one who wasn’t happy to help in some way.

– Sharon, fundraiser

Billy Ocean gives coffee morning unexpected boost

Billy Ocean meets the fundraisers Credit: Polymedia

Fundraisers, who decided to hold a coffee morning to support a cancer charity, ended up bringing in £10,000 after it got Billy Ocean's backing. The group had a surprise when the recording artist turned up at the event at Bunn Leisure Holiday Park in West Sussex.

Billy Ocean, who was performing at the park, gave organisers his support by posing for photos and offering a signed shirt for auction.

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