Ipswich Hospital records 10 serious incidents in July including one potentially avoidable death

Union members at Ipswich Hospital are preparing to strike. Picture: PHIL MORLEY

Union members at Ipswich Hospital are preparing to strike. Picture: PHIL MORLEY - Credit: Archant

Staff at Ipswich Hospital have reported a record 10 serious incidents in a month, one of which resulted in a potentially avoidable patient death.

The figures relate to July this year and have been revealed in a report by the Ipswich and East Suffolk Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG), which will be discussed by members of its governing body at a meeting tomorrow.

Jan Ingle, a spokeswoman for Ipswich Hospital, said there was a “strong reporting culture” at the trust, with staff actively encouraged to flag up any concerns so it could investigate and learn from any mistakes made.

Using national criteria, the incidents, which will now be investigated, are grouped under set categories.

Five were listed as “unexpected/potentially avoidable injury causing serious harm”; four came under “incident threatening organisation’s ability to continue to deliver an acceptable quality of healthcare services”; while one fell under “unexpected/potentially avoidable death”.

The hospital’s figure for July was the highest recorded in the CCG report, which dates back to August 2016.

The potentially avoidable death was down to a “diagnostic incident”.

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Mrs Ingle added: “We don’t want any incidents to happen, but these incidents require investigating.

“Our approach is to warmly welcome people to report incidents where they feel we could have done better or there’s room to improve and these are the national categories.

“We are very open, as open as we can be without breaching patient confidentiality, and all these incidents are recorded in our quality account each year.

“Our figures will be high because we have a strong reporting culturing here. We want incidents to be investigated so we can learn from them, so we actively encourage people to report anything.”

The same CCG document shows Ipswich Hospital has cancelled 17 operations so far this financial year.

Mrs Ingle said the trust had experienced an “exceptional summer”, with high demand and some beds out of action due to building work.

“It is deeply regrettable to everyone at the hospital whenever an operation needs to be cancelled,” she added. “It’s not something that is ever done lightly.”

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