Coventry & Warwickshire

Coventry patient 'called malingerer' by nurse before death

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Media captionPatient was accused of being a 'malingerer', according to her family

The son of a woman who died days after being sent home from hospital says a nurse called her a "malingerer".

June Foxwell, 76, visited University Hospital Coventry complaining of abdominal pain.

There, son Mark Foxwell says, she was accused of time-wasting and sent home.

Within days, "upset", he said, "about how she had been treated", she was dead - a case now referred to the coroner by the trust running the hospital, which has not commented on the alleged slurs.

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Mrs Foxwell, from Coventry, who suffered from chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, chronic kidney disease and hypertension, had suffered an abdominal aortic aneurysm prior to attending hospital on 27 August 2016.

She underwent a scan which was reported as showing no evidence of a leak from the aneurysm. After 48 hours' observation, she was discharged.

Between 30 and 31 August she returned in pain, stayed overnight, was again discharged, then visited once more - and it was during this period, her family says, that she was "verbally abused" by a male nurse.

'Timewaster'

The family also says Mrs Foxwell complained she was "put into a broom cupboard".

Mr Foxwell said: "She told me they told her she was a timewaster and a malingerer."

On 31 August's visit, a further scan this time revealed a rupture of the aneurysm "not present on the CT scan performed four days previously", according to post-mortem results.

She was taken to theatre for an emergency procedure then transferred to intensive care. She died on 2 September.

It came within weeks of the death of an MP's father who was discharged from the same hospital with an aneurysm.

A spokesperson for University Hospitals Coventry and Warwickshire NHS Trust said: "We have referred the care of this patient to the coroner and will be working with him to ensure all issues are fully addressed."

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