An ombudsman has found the care given to a woman who died of sepsis was inadequate.

The 79 year old woman, known only as Mrs A, developed sepsis after suffering a cardiac arrest.

She was admitted to Cardiff’s University Hospital of Wales but was not seen by a doctor for three hours, despite guidelines stating she should have been seen in 10 minutes.

There was also a six hour delay in administering antibiotics, which is the primary treatment for sepsis.

Sadly the condition was too far advanced by that stage and the patient died in March 2014, three weeks after being admitted.

An investigation by ombudsman Nick Bennet found the hospital did not follow guidelines on sepsis care, resulting in delays in the diagnosis and treatment of her condition.

Overall he concluded the care provided by the hospital was “inadequate”.

The Cardiff and Vale University Health Board has been ordered to pay the bereaved family compensation and apologise for the failings.

The board’s executive nurse director Ruth Walker said: “the health board recognises the risks posed by sepsis and we have been working hard to raise awareness amongst all staff of the symptoms and steps to help save lives.”

“We will continue to build on these efforts and share this sad story with all our colleagues to help avoid it happening again.”

Delayed sepsis treatment

Sepsis is a potentially life-threatening condition which is triggered by an infection. It must be treated quickly if the patient is to survive.

Unfortunately this does not always happen, with the NHS estimating that there are 37,000 sepsis deaths in the UK every year.

The UK Sepsis Trust believes that 12,500 of these deaths could have been prevented with better medical care.

If you or your loved one has been affected by substandard sepsis care, you need to talk to a solicitor about whether you could be entitled to claim compensation.

For more information on sepsis claims, please contact us at Glynns Solicitors.


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