• Robert Spicer

Hospital patient death: inadequate training: NHS Trust fined £1million

United Lincolnshire Hospitals NHS Trust fined £1million after death of patient

Health and Safety Executive v United Lincolnshire Hospitals NHS Trust (2017) Lincoln Crown Court, July 19

Statutory reference: s. 3 of the Health and Safety at Work, etc., Act 1974 (HSWA)

The facts

· In April 2012 John Biggadike, a patient at The Pilgrim Hospital in Lincoln, died from internal injuries after falling onto an exposed metal post on a standing aid hoist which staff were using to support him.

· The kneepad on the hoist had been incorrectly removed. This left the metal post exposed.

· The Trust did not have systems for training and monitoring the way in which staff used the hoist. Unsafe practices had developed.

The Trust was fined £1 million plus £160,000 costs for a breach of s.3, HSWA, for failing to ensure the health and safety of non-employees.

A spokesperson for the HSE is reported to have commented after the case that if staff had received effective training and monitoring in the use of the hoist, the death could have been avoided.

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