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Derriford Hospital reports two 'never events' in just two months

Derriford Hospital in Plymouth has reported two so-called 'never events' so far this year.

One involved a swab being left in a patient, while another saw a wrong-sided prosthesis fitted. A third never event was also reported from 2010, where a patient returned to hospital having had surgery on the wrong site.

A 'never event' is described as a "serious safety incident". The Trust has apologised for both cases.

All three incidents have been fully reported and are the subject of comprehensive investigations.

We have apologised personally to the patients affected and we are extremely sorry that these mistakes have happened.

Our staff work extremely hard to care for patients and no-one comes to work to cause harm. We see and treat nearly half a million patients per year and, for hundreds of thousands of people, their investigations and treatment go well and they report being highly satisfied with their care.

But as our staff are human, very occasionally mistakes happen and things do not go as planned.

When mistakes happen it’s essential that we’re open and honest about them with the patients affected and the public and, importantly, that we use them as learning opportunities to help us improve our services and make them safer.

– Ann James, Chief Executive Derriford Hospital

In 2013 the hospital reported five never events. In 2014, they reported one.

Plymouth grandmother found in Cyprus died of suspected heart failure

Pauline Pidcock was missing for four days Credit: Family

A grandmother from Plymouth who was missing in Cyprus for four days died from suspected heart failure two days after being found, her family say.

Pauline Pidcock spent three nights trapped down an embankment in a vineyard. She was found covered in bruises and severely dehydrated, after being heard shouting for help.

The 64-year-old grandmother, who suffered from severe epilepsy, passed away at Limassol General Hospital.

Tributes were paid to her on Facebook.

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Plymouth woman found unconscious in Cyprus dies

Pauline Pidcock. Credit: Family

A woman from Plymouth who was found unconscious after going missing in Cyprus has died.

64-year-old Pauline Pidcock from Tamerton Foliot disappeared during an excursion on the island last Wednesday.

After a major search, she was found on Sunday morning down an embankment. Her family say she died in Limassol General Hospital at about 5.30am this morning.

The cause of death is unknown at this time.

Daughter of missing woman flies out to Cyprus

Pauline Pidcock has been missing since Wednesday Credit: Family photograph

The daughter of a Plymouth woman who's gone missing in Cyprus is flying out to the island.

Pauline Pidcock was last seen on Wednesday. Her daughter Emily will travel to join the search today.

The 64 year old from Tamerton Foliot went missing on Wednesday in the village of Omodos, in the Limassol district. Pauline was last seen in a park at Omodos village. She and her husband were part of a group of tourists.

Pauline, who suffers from epilepsy and wears a blue bike helmet to protect herself, told her husband that she wasn’t up for the tour and stayed behind. Limassol police spokesman Ioannis Soteriades says the search is still on going.

Plymouth woman missing in Cyprus

Police in Cyprus are searching for a woman from Plymouth who's gone missing while on holiday on the island. Pauline Pidcock was last seen on Wednesday.

Pauline Pidcock, missing in Cyprus Credit: Family photograph

The 64 year old from Tamerton Foliot went missing on Wednesday in the village of Omodos, in the Limassol district. Pauline was last seen in a park at Omodos village. She and her husband were part of a group of tourists. Pauline, who suffers from epilepsy and wears a blue bike helmet to protect herself, told her husband that she wasn’t up for the tour and stayed behind. Limassol police spokesman Ioannis Soteriades says the search is still on going.

‘We can confirm that a British national was reported missing in Cyprus on 20th May. We a providing consular assistance to the family at this time’.

– Foreign Office spokesman

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Man sought after sexual assault of 13-year-old girl

Police investigating a sexual assault on a 13-year-old girl in Plymouth have released an Evofit of a man they want to speak to.

Do you recognise this man? Credit: Devon and Cornwall Police

The girl was sexually assaulted by a man as she waited at a bus stop in Stoke village, Devonport Road, on Tuesday 28 April between 2.50pm and 3.05pm.

The man is reported to have touched her inappropriately before she managed to get on a bus.

He is white, in his 40s, of large build, with mid length blond messy hair. Anyone who recognises him is asked to contact the police.

Burglars who left 'trail of destruction' across Devon and Somerset jailed

Gang ringleader Reg Soper holidaying in Mexico - one of several photographs which helped police catch him. Credit: Devon and Cornwall Police

Three men who caused a crime wave of over fifty burglaries across Devon and Somerset have been sentenced to more than 20 years in prison between them.

50-year-old Reg Soper from Taunton, described by police as the ringleader of the gang, received an eight-and-a-half-year sentence, while his brother Percy, 56, from Plymouth, was sentenced to six-and-a-half years. 24-year-old Nicky Christian from Plymouth also received a six-and-a-half year term, while a fourth defendant was acquitted.

The burglaries, described by the judge at Exeter Crown Court today as 'a substantial crime operation', caused more than £239,000 of damage and loss to jewellery shops and other commercial premises between May and October 2012.

The gang were described by police as "determined, prolific and ruthless".

The crime spree was well-planned and organised with most offences taking place at night. The criminals left a trail of destruction behind them, thought they were untouchable and had an enormous impact on the rural communities of both Devon and Somerset.

“It is not a coincidence that the crime wave has ceased upon the arrest of the gang. A significant amount of work went into this complex investigation and this has been reflected in the guilty verdicts.

“I would like to thank the victims of these crimes for their co-operation, patience and support during this investigation. They have helped to put these criminals before the courts and be punished for what they have done.

“Rural crime will remain a priority for Devon and Cornwall Police and we will continue to robustly police those who cause harm to our communities.

– Detective Inspector Jim Tarr, Senior Investigating Officer, Devon and Cornwall Police

West Country hospitals fined millions over waiting times

Hospitals in the West have been penalised for their A&E waiting times. Credit: PA

West Country hospitals are being fined millions for failing to meet targets.

A&E waiting times and ambulance handover deadlines are among the problems which have cost Devon hospitals over £6.5m and the Royal Cornwall Hospital Trust, which has a £7m deficit, over a million pounds.

The nationally agreed targets are set every year by NHS England. Local clinical commissioning groups hold the hospitals to account by levying fines, reinvesting the money into schemes to improve services.

Derriford Hospital in Plymouth was charged £4.8 million, but received half back in compensation.

In 2014/15, we paid fines of £4.8m. We received £2.89m in compensation.

In recognition of the exceptional emergency pressures faced by the Trust, commissioners agreed to compensate the trust financially for a loss of income for planned operations that were unable to be undertaken and that emergency activity was costing more than the 50% of tariff paid.

NHS England required fines for performance to be applied by commissioners.

– Plymouth Hospitals NHS Trust
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