Insights / News
Insights / News
In this presentation, Ian Denham discusses his role in the Inquest that followed the deaths of two women following an outbreak of the Mycobacterium Abscessus pathogen at the Royal Papworth Hospital in Cambridge.
Karen Starling, aged 54, and Anne Martinez, aged 65, both tested positive for Mycobacterium Abscessus (MA) after successfully undergoing double lung transplants at the Royal Papworth Hospital.
A NHS serious incident report found that 21 patients with lung conditions were infected with MA in the months after the specialist heart and lung hospital opened in May 2019. The “most credible source” of the outbreak was the hospital’s water supply becoming contaminated, the report by Royal Papworth Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, which runs the site, found.
More than 30 patients were believed to have been affected by bacterial infection outbreak.
Ian represented the interests of both families during the course of the two week inquest in November 2022.
During the inquest, evidence was given from those working at the Trust at the time the hospital opened, that there were concerns over whether flushing of water systems was being performed effectively after the hospital opened in May 2019, due to a lack of resource. Flushing is a necessary step to avoid stagnant water and the growth of bacteria in water systems.
Keith Morton KC, assistant coroner for Cambridgeshire and Peterborough, found that Karen and Anne’s infection was hospital acquired. It was likely both were exposed to MA in the hospital water at some point during their stay at the Royal Papworth.
These tragic events have been widely reported in the press, including by the BBC.
Ian Denham is a personal injury practitioner with a particular expertise in matters involving serious and catastrophic injuries, wrongful deaths and accidents abroad. He also has considerable experience of acting for families at Coronial Inquests. In 2022, he also represented the family of a young child who died after being exposed to an E.coli infection which caused severe haemolytic uraemic syndrome associated with kidney failure and with critical neurotoxic effects on the brain from which she died.
Webinars & Recordings 11 Sep, 2023