Search

Spelling mistake at Northwick Park Hospital leads to grandmother, 85, bleeding to death

11:19 01 February 2016

Irmgard Cooper died at the age of 85

Irmgard Cooper died at the age of 85

Archant

A spelling mistake and a mix-up by senior medics led to a grandmother bleeding to death after an operation at Northwick Park Hospital, an inquest has ruled.

Mrs Cooper died at Northwick Park HospitalMrs Cooper died at Northwick Park Hospital

The blunder meant cross-matched blood supplies which were put on hold for Irmgard Cooper, 85, had been sent back to the bank resulting in a two-hour wait for a life-saving transfusion she needed.

By the time the replacement supplies arrived Mrs Cooper, who lived in Hayling Island in Hampshire, had lost all her blood and she died on the operating table.

On Friday at North London Coroner’s Court an inquest heard her name had been spelt as ‘Irngard’ instead of ‘Irmgard’ which resulted in the fatal delay.

In addition the surgeon had not been told no blood supplies were available during the operation until he was carrying out the procedure on May 7 last year.

Irmgard and Raymond Cooper had been married for 62 yearsIrmgard and Raymond Cooper had been married for 62 years

The German-born mother-of-two, who had three grandchildren and had been married to husband Raymond for 62 years, had undergone a serious but successful operation to repair a large bulge in the main artery to her heart.

When the surgeon questioned the anaesthetist as to why he wasn’t giving extra blood supplies when needed, he was told for the first time that none were available.

She would have survived if her O negative blood supply was available in the theatre immediately.

Coroner Andrew Walker found gross failings in the failure to provide blood at a critical time when it was already previously known that blood would be required.

Irmgard Cooper with her daughter Lorraine BookerIrmgard Cooper with her daughter Lorraine Booker

The inquest also found that the death was avoidable and she had died from neglect.

A Serious Incident Investigation Report subsequently conducted by the hospital found that she died from serious blood clotting difficulties, cardio vascular collapse, haemorrhage, and that the delay in giving blood caused her death.

Mrs Cooper’s daughter, Lorraine Booker, plans to sue London North West Healthcare NHS Trust over her mother’s death.

She said: “My father has suffered from nightmares over my mother’s death ever since. We just feel very let down and betrayed by the hospital for a death that should never have occurred.”

Renu Daly, from medical negligence specialists Hudgell Solicitors, who is acting on behalf of the family, said: “The first error was the mis-spelling of the patient’s name on the blood sample. The lack of communication between the anaesthetist and the surgeon over the absence of blood was the second error.

“Mrs Cooper was effectively dead from the time she arrived in intensive care, she was already suffering from catastrophic internal bleeding which meant death was inevitable.

“The family is now receiving our support and advice as they want to be certain that this matter is publicly investigated and exposed, and that devastating errors such as these are never able to happen again.”

Jacqueline Docherty, chief executive of the trust, said: “I would like to offer my sincere condolences to the family of Irmgard Cooper and say how sorry I am for what happened.

“We accept the coroner’s verdict. Prior to the inquest, the trust undertook a full internal investigation, and has implemented systems to ensure that incidents of this nature do not occur again.”

0 comments

Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files
Comments

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Kilburn Times visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Kilburn Times staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Kilburn Times account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

Latest Kilburn & Brent News Stories

A teenager has been jailed for rape and attempted murder after stabbing a 15-year-old girl and forcing her to have sex with him in Hampstead Cemetery.

Friday, February 24, 2017

Four fire engines and around 20 firefighters battled the blaze in Harrow Road last night after seven people escaped without injury.

Friday, February 24, 2017

British Transport Police were called to the Tube station shortly after 7am this morning before the woman was taken to hospital.

Thursday, February 23, 2017

The sausage dog, named Bob, was born completely deaf but is now on the lookout for his pawfect home thanks to The Mayhew.

Thursday, February 23, 2017

Police and the London Fire Brigade were called shortly before 1pm after 60mph winds blew off a section of roofing which fell outside Costa Coffee.

Thursday, February 23, 2017

Ingrid Schultz, 65, travelled abroad, dined out at restaurants and splashed out on shopping sprees after pocketing £10,000 over five years.

Thursday, February 23, 2017

Jurors failed to reach verdicts last week on charges of rape and sexual assault regarding an incident at York University in June 2014.

Thursday, February 23, 2017

Jason De Sousa, 21, was arrested yesterday and will appear at Hendon Magistrates Court today while a 20-year-old has been bailed until March.

Education and Training

cover

Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Most Read Kilburn News

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Brent & Kilburn Times
e-edition today

Subscribe

Education and Training

cover

Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now