25 Jul 2014

Clinical Negligence

Sara Uren commenting on nil by mouth

Commenting on the recent story that BBC journalist Jeremy Bowen’s father was left ‘Nil By Mouth’ in error whilst an inpatient at the University Hospital of Wales, Sara Uren, Associate at Harding Evans solicitors says “This is very concerning indeed. There are many reasons why patients may be labelled ‘Nil By Mouth’ such as the risk of aspirating (inhaling) fluids or food into the lungs before/after surgery. However when there is no clinical reason to keep a patient ‘Nil By Mouth’ there is a risk of serious malnutrition and dehydration. This can have devastating consequences. Likewise if a patient is given food/fluids when they have been labelled ‘Nil By Mouth’.

Being admitted into hospital can be a worrying time for patients and their families. Therefore having confidence that basic needs such as receiving food and water are being met is absolutely vital. Busy wards that are understaffed and overworked means that unfortunately the incident experienced by Jeremy Bowen’s father is not uncommon.

There have also been reported cases that patients usually capable of feeding themselves independently are having food and fluids simply left out of their reach. If nobody notices that has happened there is a risk of that person suffering severe malnutrition causing death. This is particularly true of the young and elderly. The failure to meet the fundamental needs of patients should never be allowed to happen”

Sara is an Associate Solicitor and has extensive experience in a variety of Claimant based litigated and non-litigated Clinical Negligence cases against NHS and non-NHS bodies and practitioners. She has familiarity with all aspects of clinical negligence including birth injuries, diagnosis errors, cancer cases, psychiatric injuries and nursing claims amongst other matters.

Cymraeg:

Wrth sylwi ar y newyddion diweddar bod tad, newyddiadurwr y BBC, Jeremy Bowen wedi ei adael gyda chyfarwyddiadau ar gyfer ‘Dim trwy’r ceg’ (Nil by mouth), tra’n glaf yn Ysbyty Frenhinol Caerdydd, fe ddywedodd Sara Haf Uren o Harding Evans; “Y mae hyn yn achosi pryder mawr. Mae yna lawer o resymau pam fod cleifion a chyfarwyddiadau ar gyfer ‘Dim trwy’r ceg’, megis eu bod mewn perygl o anadlu hylifau neu fwyd i’r ysgyfaint cyn neu ar ol llawrdriniaeth. Fodd bynnag pan nad oes unrhyw rheswm clinigol i gadw’r claf ar ‘Dim trwy’r ceg’ mae yna berygl mawr o ddiffyg maeth ddifrifol a dadhydradiad. Yn yr un modd os yw’r claf yn cael hylifau a bwyd tra o dan gyfyrwyddiadau ‘Dim trwy’r ceg’ gall hyn hefyd achosi canlyniadau dinistriol.

Y mae mynychu triniaeth mewn ysbyty yn amser pryderus iawn i gleifion au teuluoedd, ac y mae’n hanfodol bwysig iddynt gael hyder yn yr ysbytai a bod eu anghenion sylfaenol fel bwyd a dŵr yn angenrheidiol. Yn anffodus yr oedd y profiad a gafwyd gan tad Jeremy Bowen ddim yn anghyffredin – mae hyn o achos gorweithdra, prysurdeb y wardiau a diffyg staff.

Mae achosion hefyd wedi eu cofnodi lle mae’r cleifion sy’n bwydo’u hunain yn annibynol, ble mae’r hylif a’r bwyd tu hwnt i’w cyrraedd; ac os nad yw’r staff yn sylweddoli, mae’r person hwnnw yn gallu dioddef diffyg maeth difrifol sydd gallu achosi marwolaeth. Mae hyn yn arbennig o wir am yr ifanc a’r henoed. Ni ddylid byth y methiant i gwrdd a anghenion sylfaenol gael yr hawl i ddigwydd.

Mae Sara yn Gyfwreithwraig Cyswllt gyda phrofiad helaeth mewn amrywiaeth o achosion yn seiliedig ar hawliau yn erbyn yr Gwasanaeth Iechyd Gwladol, yn ogystal a’r gyfundrefn gofal iechyd preifat. Mae hi yn gyfarwydd â phob agwedd o esgeulustod meddygol yn cynnwys anafiadau geni, camgymeriadau diagnosis, achosion o gancr, anafiadau seiciatrig a hawliadau nyrsio, ymysg llawer o faterion eraill.

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