Gosport hospital deaths: ‘Today is a terrible day for those who care about patient safety’ - lawyer

Gosport MP Caroline Dinenage at Portsmouth Cathedral today

Gosport hospital deaths: MP says report is heartbreaking and adds ‘no-one realised the scale’ of this

The Bishop of Liverpool, the Rt Rev James Jones, at the unveiling of a report into deaths at Gosport War Memorial Hospital'Picture: 'Malcolm Wells

Gosport hospital deaths: Up to 650 patients died after being prescribed opioids ‘without medical justification’

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A LAWYER who campaigns for patient safety says ‘today is a terrible day for those who care greatly about patient safety’.

Suzanne White, head of clinical negligence at Leigh Day and patient safety campaigner, said: ‘We were forewarned about the extent of the numbers involved in this inquiry, however nothing could have prepared us for the extent in which all these institutions have let patients down so badly.

Gosport War Memorial Hospital 'Picture: Ian Hargreaves  (180618_memorial)

Gosport War Memorial Hospital 'Picture: Ian Hargreaves (180618_memorial)

READ MORE: Inquiry finds up to 650 patients died after being prescribed opiods ‘without medical justification’

‘This is a terrible day for those who care greatly about patient safety.

‘The panel’s findings that over 450 people died, and another 200 could have been similarly affected through an institutionalised practice of prescribing unnecessary painkillers, must bring real change across the NHS so that nothing like this could ever happen again. There can be no culture of “omerta” in the NHS.

READ MORE: Live updates as inquiry findings are made public

‘Despite the repeated warning signs of the initial investigation in 2003 and long-standing concerns raised by families and even staff, these appear to have been ignored.

‘It should be remembered that many of those who died at Gosport had many happy months, years or even decades denied to them through the actions of individuals involved who must now face a full investigation.

‘These cases date back to the late 1980s and I cannot imagine the distress and pain the families have had to endure for so long before they have finally had some answers about the awful circumstances of their loved one’s death.’