QE2 Birmingham Hospital investigated as helpline set up for patients

26 September 2014

QE2 Birmingham Hospital investigated as helpline set up for patients

Queen Elizabeth Hospital chlorine contamination leads to police probe after death of two patients.

Police have commenced an investigation into a Birmingham hospital after deaths of two patients were linked to contaminated water used for dialysis treatment. Chlorine levels were found to be an astonishing 16 times higher than the accepted safe level. An exclusive helpline has been set up at Mistreatment.com to help patients at the hospital.

Critical care patients undergoing dialysis at the QE2 Birmingham were unaware that the levels of chlorine had contaminated the water. A police investigation will now look to determine if there is a direct link or not between the contaminations and the deaths. A Channel 4 investigation uncovered the deadly levels of water contamination and the hospital has since referred the cases to a coroner for investigation.

Since August 4th the investigation uncovered that the water at the hospital had been contaminated on three separate occasions, with staff and patients warned not to drink tap water and were given bottled water instead. How the contaminated water ended up being used in dialysis machines remains unclear although the Mistreatment.com helpline is available for patients who wish to raise a complaint if they have been affected or to better understand exactly what their patient rights are.

The investigation uncovered that on the day the second patient died high levels of chlorine were detected again, only this time in the radiotherapy department. Mistreatment.com has a number of specialist hospital infection teams which regularly provide advice to patients who have had to deal with cases where hospital fluids have been contaminated and who subsequently wish to make a complaint about the treatment received.

In a statement, the hospital reportedly said: “A review of all chlorine systems has been completed and the implementation of any necessary works is being carried out.

“We have enforced additional safety measures which include 30-minute monitoring, 24 hours a day, with 4-hourly reporting back to the trust on chlorine levels across the hospital.

“There are twice weekly meetings between the trust and contractors.” They added “no patients or staff were adversely affected” during this period.

The Channel 4 news investigation believes the QE2 Birmingham hospital is rife with further standard health and safety problems. Under a private contract, the hospital must self-monitor its own maintenance  but critics have repeatedly stated that this means transparency about failings is not necessarily paramount amongst stakeholder interests.

What you can do

Have you or a loved one wanted to raise a complaint with the NHS regarding medical mistreatment that has been experienced? Our specialist teams can provide FREE advice about what your options are, whether you want to make a medical negligence claim or medical mistreatment complaint or simply to better understand what your patient rights. You can contact us here today for  a no-obligation and completely free conversation to discuss what happened to you.