Trial of David Sellu:”Serious Errors” Caused Patient’s “Avoidable” Death
Trial of David Sellu:"Serious Errors" Caused Patient’s"Avoidable" Death
A patient died due to “serious errors in judgement” by a senior doctor at a private hospital in north-west London the Old Bailey was told.
Jurors heard that James Hughes was subject to “exceptionally bad” care from senior doctor Devid Sellu after routine knee surgery at the Clementine Churchill Hospital.
James Hughes’s bowel ruptured following his successful knee operation in 2010.
Mr Sellu who has denied gross negligence manslaughter “simply ignored” the urgency of the case the Old Bailey heard.
After Mr Hughes’s first operation on February 5th at the Harrow hospital Mr Hughes a 66-year-old retired builder from County Armagh suffered abdominal pain and was then transferred to Mr Sellu’s care.
Mr Sellu of Croft Close in Hillingdon west London specialises in colorectal surgery and has been a surgeon for four decades.
Prosecutors told the court Mr Sellu thought that there had been a rupture which is a potentially life-threatening condition that needed surgery.
Despite his concerns he didn’t perform surgery and ordered a CT scan for the following day.
The scan showed that his bowel had ruptured but he “failed” to take him to surgery immediately and instead carried on with his own clinic prosecutor Bobbie Cheema QC said.
Mr Hughes was eventually sent to surgery at 9pm on 12 February after being in pain for 40 hours but by this point his condition had deteriorated so badly that intensive care specialists had to work to stabilise him the court heard.
Ms Cheema told the jury that Mr Hughes was transferred to the intensive care unit following surgery but he died the next day.
“That death was avoidable” she said
“Had (Mr Sellu) operated the night before or even earlier on February 12 Mr Hughes would have had a very good chance of survival.”
She continued: “There was a series of missed opportunities and serious errors in judgement in the care of this patient and they combined to cause Mr Hughes’ death.
“The standard of care was exceptionally bad.”
Ms Cheema told the court that Mr Hughes felt that the help he was receiving from the hospital wasn’t sufficient and phoned a doctor friend who told him to call the surgeon who did his knee operation.
The surgeon John Hollingdsle came to visit Mr Hughes and examine him.
“He was concerned something was wrong… unrelated to his knee surgery and asked for an X-ray to be completed urgently” Ms Cheema told the court.
Mr Hollingdale was “surprised” to learn the test was to be delayed until the following day as the hospital had the facilities to perform the tests around the clock Ms Cheema told the jurors.
Mr Sellu is also accused of perjury in relation to allegations he lied about at Mr Hughes’s inquest under oath which he also denies.
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