Probe launched over death of Sunderland hospital patient

William Smith, of Pennywell, Sunderland, his wife Betty died aged 87 on 30.01.2013 in Sunderland Royal Hospital.
William Smith, of Pennywell, Sunderland, his wife Betty died aged 87 on 30.01.2013 in Sunderland Royal Hospital.
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SUNDERLAND Royal Hospital is investigating the death of an elderly patient after a complaint about her care.

Elizabeth Smith had been a patient for three months after she was admitted with pains in her head.

Copy picture supplied by William Smith of his late wife Betty who died aged 87 on 30.01.2013 in Sunderland Royal Hospital.

Copy picture supplied by William Smith of his late wife Betty who died aged 87 on 30.01.2013 in Sunderland Royal Hospital.

The 87-year-old, who was known as Betty, suffered from pneumonia and an irregular heartbeat and had had a stroke.

Her husband William has made a complaint to the Royal regarding her care, and he is seeking legal advice.

Mr Smith, 88, claims no doctors were present when his wife suffered a haemorrhage in the early hours of January 2.

“I feel very annoyed that this happened,” he said.

Betty initially spent nine weeks in hospital from November 1.

She was then recommended to stay at Farnborough Court residential care home, Town End Farm, for respite care before being taken back to hospital.

On readmittance, she contracted MRSA and pneumonia.

Mr Smith, who met Betty while they were both serving in the Army during the Second World War, said: “I think my wife could have lived longer.

“Even if it was just a little while, it would have been worth it.”

A spokesman for Sunderland Royal Hospital said: “We can confirm receipt of Mr Smith’s complaint and will be investigating the case accordingly.

“We would like to pass on our condolences to Mr Smith at this very sad time and will be responding to him as soon as our investigations are complete.”

Twitter: @Monica_Turnbull