The NHS trust fined £ 2.5 million for the deaths of two patients in 2018

Russells Hall Hospital in Dudley, West Midlands, where the safety rating was recently downgraded to Inadequate due to concerns about acute and acute treatment and diagnostics.

Trust runs Russells Hall Hospital in Dudley, West Midlands (Photo: PA)

An NHS trust has been fined £ 2.5 million following the deaths of two patients.

Mother of six Natalie Billingham, 33, and 14-year-old Kaysie-Jane Robinson both died of sepsis at Russells Hall Hospital in the West Midlands in March 2018.

The Care Quality Commission took the Dudley Group NHS Foundation Trust to court after assessing that there had been errors in their treatment.

A senior figure from the trust has apologized to their grieving families after admitting that mistakes were made.

A two-day hearing heard how Natalie died of multiple organ failure caused by a serious infection days before an inaccurate checkup of Kaysie-Jane, who had cerebral palsy, could not see signs of sepsis.

District Judge Graham Wilkinson, who ruled on the trust, said the deaths came after hospital directors ‘failed to act swiftly and decisively’ to concerns raised by the CQC following pre-death inspections.

The judge, who admitted that there had been improvements in care since the ‘dark days’ of 2018, said one of the offenses had caused Kaysie-Jane’s death.

The judge told the court: ‘Every patient who comes to (an emergency room) has the right to expect that the care they receive will be safe.’

A £ 2.5m fine against the NHS trust was confirmed after it was brought to justice by the health watchdog (Image: Getty)

After the trust admitted two breaches of the 2008 Health and Social Care Act, it was also ordered to pay a contribution of £ 38,000 to CQC’s costs on top of the fine of £ 2,533,332.

The amount was decided after a court hearing in Wolverhampton Magistrates’ Court today.

In a statement issued after the fine was imposed, the trust’s CEO, Diane Wake, said: ‘We are deeply saddened that our care did not live up to the standards that Kaysie-Jane, Natalie and their families were entitled to expect.

‘We would like to apologize and offer our sincere condolences again to the families of Kaysie-Jane and Natalie.

“While it will give families some comfort, we have learned from the mistakes that led to the tragic deaths of Kaysie-Jane and Natalie and made fundamental changes to the way our care is provided.”

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