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Great-grandfather 'left without food and water' before hospital death

By Richard Guttridge | Walsall | Health | Published:

A great-grandfather was left without any food and water for periods before he eventually died at Walsall Manor Hospital.

Malcolm Pinches was a member of the Wolverhampton Slot Car Club

Bosses at Walsall Healthcare NHS Trust have now apologised for failings in the care of 80-year-old Pelsall man Malcolm Pinches.

His daughter Tina Noon, from Walsall, said her father was left without any dignity as he deteriorated at the hospital.

An investigation found nurses did not “recognise the importance of hydration”, while food charts were not filled in meaning it wasn’t known whether or not he had eaten.

Mrs Noon told how she was forced to feed her father herself on one occasion, while he was placed in a side room on his own despite having suffered a fall during his stay at the hospital where he cut his head.

Walsall Manor Hospital officials apologised for failings in the care

Mr Pinches, who fixed engines at Lucas Aerospace in Wolverhampton before retirement and was also a keen member of Wolverhampton Slot Car Club, was also placed on discharge wards when Mrs Noon said it was clear he was not well enough to go home.

She said she believed nurses wanted to get him out of the hospital.

Richard Beeken, chief executive of the Walsall Healthcare NHS Trust, which runs the Manor, said he was “very sorry you had to feed your father and encourage him to drink because you felt nursing staff were uncaring and not doing their job properly”.

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Mr Pinches had been on a drip but the cannula came out, he explained. “This does not portray a good example of the expected standard of care to be delivered by our staff."

There was also confusion about whether or not the pensioner had suffered a mini-stroke before arriving at hospital on May 27.

Mrs Noon said the GP who responded to a 111 call believed he had had a mini-stroke but doctors said there was no mention of this in Mr Pinches’ medical notes.

His condition deteriorated and Mr Pinches died on June 13 this year.

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Walsall Manor Hospital said care fell below standards

An investigation by the trust listed “inconsistency of documenting food diary input and output”, “not recognising when an individual requires more help with their meals” and “not recognising the importance of hydration” as failings in Mr Pinches’ care and has pledged to improve.

But Mrs Noon, 57, said: “The dignity that was lost was beyond belief. He was being passed from discharge ward to discharge ward when he was getting progressively worse.

"What the hell was going on? They were just trying to get him out.”

She added: “The apology means diddly squat. Don’t be really sorry, change things.”

Karen Dunderdale, director of nursing at the trust, said: “We have thoroughly investigated the complaint that was made and have apologised for our care falling below the standard we would expect in some areas.

"We continually work with our patients and their families to ensure improvements are made to help us deliver safe, high-quality care and have offered to meet with Mr Pinches’ family which has been accepted in order to further address their concerns.”

Richard Guttridge

By Richard Guttridge
Investigations Editor - @RichG_star

Investigations Editor for the Express & Star.

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