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Grieving Frank Lynch's damning list of Medway Maritime Hospital 'failings' after death of mother Phyllis Hutchings

By Nicola Jordan

A son mourning the death of his mother has drawn up a damning list of complaints of her treatment at Medway Maritime Hospital.

Frank Lynch claims dementia sufferer Phyllis Hutchings was not bathed or had her hair washed during the four weeks she was on the ward.

He said the frail 89-year-old was also not fed properly and was underweight and dehydrated when she died.

Dementia sufferer Phyllis Hutchings died at Medway Maritime Hospital
Dementia sufferer Phyllis Hutchings died at Medway Maritime Hospital

Mr Lynch, 65, said: "To add insult to injury, after waiting two days for the doctor to sign the death certificate it was wrongly dated."

The cause of Mrs Hutchings' death was bronchial pneumonia, heart disease and dementia.

Mr Lynch and his wife Sue believe his mother might still be alive today if her care plan had been better at Medway Maritime - in special measures after a series of damning Care Quality Commission reports.

"Nobody seemed to know what was wrong with her and what her treatment should be..." - grieving Frank Lynch

He said: "If my mother had been treated correctly and with compassion, I am certain she would still be with us."

Mrs Hutchings, a widow who lived in a care home in Sittingbourne, was admitted to A&E on Monday, July 14 and on the same day was transferred to the general Will Adams ward.

It was only days before her death on Tuesday, August 12 that she was moved to a specially designated ward for dementia patients.

Mrs Lynch, 55, said: "She was treated very well in A&E, but as soon as she was moved to the Will Adams ward it went downhill. It was heartbreaking and degrading.

"Nobody seemed to know what was wrong with her and what her treatment should be. I know they are short-staffed but there should always be somebody in charge who knows what's going on."

Medway Maritime Hospital. Library image
Medway Maritime Hospital. Library image

A spokesman for Medway NHS Foundation Trust, which runs the hospital, said: "We would like to reiterate our sincere condolences to Mr Lynch and his family.

"We are fully aware of Mr Lynch's concerns around his mother’s care during her stay at Medway Maritime Hospital.

"The concerns are being looked at with the individuals and teams involved in Mrs Hutchings' care and we will be arranging a meeting with Mr Lynch to discuss the matter in more detail."

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