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Tories warn Cameron NHS 'on brink of collapse'

Senior Tories have called on David Cameron to increase NHS spending significantly as a former health minister forecasts a collapse in the service within five years, according to the Observer.

General view of signage for the Emergency Department at a hospital in Basingstoke. Credit: PA

Stephen Dorrell, a former Conservative health secretary, Sarah Wollaston, a Tory MP, and Paul Burstow, a former coalition health minister, say that with the economy growing the NHS must receive a real terms increase in spending over the next five years if it is to function properly.

Paul Burstow, a Liberal Democrat health minister in the first two years of the coalition government, said he believed the NHS needed an extra £15bn from the Treasury over the next five years "if you don't want the system to collapse during the course of the next parliament".


NHS are 'determined to make sure lessons are learned'

NHS services in Devon are "determined to ensure that the lessons really have been learnt" from the untimely death of a three-year-old who died from sepsis after a "catalogue of errors" across local health services.

Dr Graham Lockerbie spoke on behalf of Cricketfield GP Surgery, NHS Direct, out-of-hours service Devon Doctors Ltd and South Devon Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust, and said:

Sam and his family have been let down by the NHS. It's clear that there were shortcomings at every stage of his contact with the health service and that, in the words of the Ombudsman, Sam died when he should have survived.

All of the organisations involved recognise that opportunities to alter the tragic outcome were missed. We all accept the blame for that. For this, we, the local NHS, apologise unreservedly to Sam's family. Quite simply, we should have done better.

– Dr Graham Lockerbie


Toddler would still be alive 'if he had gotten proper care'

A toddler who died after a "catalogue of errors" at an NHS hospital caring for him while he had sepsis, would still be alive today if he had received the appropriate care, a watchdog has said.

The Parliamentary Health Service Ombudsman (PHSO) Dame Julie Mellor criticised the "further injustice" the bereaved family suffered during the complaints process.

We've published this case so that the wider NHS learns from Sam's death and action is taken to help prevent lives being lost from repeated mistakes.

Sadly, this case reinforces that the NHS needs to do much more to prevent avoidable deaths from sepsis.

– Dame Julie Mellor

Read: NHS 'catalogue of errors' led to three-year-old's death

Dead boy's family 'failed' by NHS complaints system

The family of Sam Morrish - a young boy who died in 2010 after a series of errors by NHS staff - say they have been let down after it took "an astonishing length of time" to discover the circumstances surround his death.

In a statement published through the Patients Association, Sam's family said they and NHS staff had been failed by the Parliamentary Health Service Ombudsman (PHSO).

The astonishing length of time it has taken for PHSO to finalise this report has inescapably prolonged our distress, as we have repeatedly had to revisit and relive the hardest day of our lives.

Accordingly, although we are grateful that the PHSO has upheld our complaints, and we want to thank them for the clear recommendations that they have now made, we are left with serious concerns about the competence, capability and accountability of the PHSO itself.

– Sam Morrish's family

NHS 'catalogue of errors' led to 3-year-old's death

A three-year-old boy died from a treatable condition due to a string of errors by NHS workers, a review has found.

Sam Morrish died of severe sepsis following a series of mistakes.
Sam Morrish died of severe sepsis following a series of mistakes. Credit: Scott Morrish

Sam Morrish died after four separate health service organisations made repeated mistakes in his care, the Parliamentary Health Service Ombudsman (PHSO) said.

Sam died of severe sepsis in December 2010 following a "catalogue of errors" by the Cricketfield GP Surgery, by NHS Direct, by the out-of-hours service Devon Doctors Ltd and by the South Devon Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust.

Failures included inadequate assessment of the toddler, not recognising that he was vomiting blood and a three-hour delay before he received antibiotics at hospital.

Dr Graham Lockerbie, speaking on behalf of the local NHS, said it is "determined to ensure that the lessons really have been learnt" following the findings.

Language tests for EU doctors a 'huge step forward'

New rules to help check foreign doctors' English language skills are a "huge step forward for patient safety", the Health Minister has said.

Previously EU doctors could practise in the UK without having to pass a language test, while those from outside Europe could be made to prove their grasp of English..

European doctors could now face a language test if there are concerns about their English. Credit: Andrew Matthews/PA Wire/Press Association Images

The new powers mean the General Medical Council can order a language test if "serious concerns" are raised about a doctor.

Health Minister Dr Dan Poulter said: "For the first time ever, we have a full system of checks in place to prevent doctors working in the NHS who do not have the necessary knowledge of English from treating patients."

"This is a huge step forward for patient safety. I am pleased to have played my part in making this happen," he added.

Read: Doctors face new English language tests

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