Andrew Ross inquest:  hospital internal investigation procedures must improve 

3 September 2014

Lawyers acting for the family of a weight loss surgery patient who died after suffering catastrophic brain damage during an operation to remove excess skin said they welcome the coroner’s request that the hospital must improve its internal investigation procedures. 

Andrew Ross, who had four children and three step-children, of Wythenshawe, Manchester, was 48 when he died in 2011 due to complications of the severe brain injury he sustained. 

Beth Reay, a specialist solicitor in the medical negligence department at law firm JMW, represented Mr Ross’ devastated family at the inquest into his death. The hearing at Manchester Coroner’s Court retuned a narrative verdict. 

Beth commented: “The coroner raised concerns that the internal investigation procedures at the private Spire hospital for such an adverse incident fell below the standard they should be and must be improved. 

“We believe that the hospital should address this issue as a matter of urgency. It is completely unacceptable for patients and families to be left in the dark over what has gone wrong and why due to inadequate investigations. It is also crucial from a safeguarding point of view so that further incidents can be prevented by ensuring lessons are learned. 

“The inquest has gone some way to providing Andrew’s family with the answers they were seeking and they hope that his case will help to ensure the same thing does not happen to any other weight loss patients at the hospital.” 

After having a gastric bypass operation Mr Ross had dropped from 41 stone to 27 stone and needed a second operation to remove a large apron-like flap of excess skin. 

However after Mr Ross was placed under general anaesthetic ahead of the procedure at Manchester’s Spire Hospital* on 21 March 2011 something went badly wrong with his oxygen supply and it was cut off.

Mr Ross went into cardiac arrest but doctors managed to stabilise him and he initially survived. However his brain was catastrophically damaged leaving him severely debilitated and he could not return home. Mr Ross was placed in an NHS long stay unit where he received specialist care until he passed away on 10 August 2011.

Ends

*The operation to remove the excess skin, known as an apronectomy, was funded by the NHS but carried out at the private Spire Hospital.  

For more information or to arrange an interview, please contact Kelly Hindle on the details below:

Kelly Hindle

D. 0161 828 1868

E. Kelly.hindle@jmw.co.uk 

Note to Editors

JMW Solicitors LLP is a leading Manchester law firm and offers a broad range of legal services to both commercial and private clients.JMW’s Clinical Negligence team is headed up by leading lawyer, Eddie Jones. 



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