HEALTH bosses have been asked to investigate possible links with disgraced TV presenter Jimmy Savile.
County Durham and Darlington NHS Foundation Trust confirmed it has received information from the Department of Health regarding Savile, in reference to Dryburn Hospital.
A spokesman for the Trust said the information does not refer to contact with patients.
Dryburn Hospital closed in 2001 and was replaced by the University Hospital of North Durham.
The spokesman added: “As the legacy organisation for the hospital, the Trust will investigate this information and respond as required.”
It is one of 19 further hospitals to have their links with Savile investigated. Newcastle’s Royal Victoria Infirmary is also on the list.
The hospitals will be investigated by their relevant health trusts, but each investigation will be properly monitored. They are in addition to an initial 13 inquiries into hospitals which are believed to have been visited by the disgraced former Top of the Pops host. Savile is thought to have used his position to abuse vulnerable patients, many of them children.
After details first emerged about cases of alleged abuse by Savile in hospitals, three major investigations were launched, at Leeds General Infirmary, Stoke Mandeville Hospital and Broadmoor Hospital.
Further investigations were then announced at 10 hospitals across the country. These latest inquiries come off the back of investigations by the Metropolitan Police into Savile.
In a written statement to MPs, Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt said former barrister Kate Lampard, who was asked to oversee the Department of Health’s investigations into Savile, will make sure the inquiries are properly carried out. Mr Hunt said: “The Metropolitan Police Service has completed its document review and transferred various material concerning Savile and the NHS to the Department of Health.
“The information has been passed on to the relevant hospital trusts for further investigation as appropriate. These include hospitals that may have closed in which case the information has been passed on to the legacy organisation.”
A Department of Health spokeswoman said: “It is essential that all the information is considered and investigations are thorough to learn the lessons about Savile’s pattern of offending.”