Mum demands hospital apology for ‘negligent’ treatment in son’s death

Glen Bonson
Glen Bonson
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The parents of a disabled man who died in Barnsley Hospital more than two years ago have demanded an apology after their medical negligence claim was settled out of court.

Glen Bonson was aged 26 when he died in January 2013, after medics failed to recognise the life-saving ‘shunt’ he was fitted with as a child was not working properly and causing him to be severely ill.

The shunt – a small hole or passage – had been installed to help Glen’s cerebral palsy and hydrocephalus, a condition where there is n abnormal accumulation of fluid in the brain.

However, doctors failed to give Glen a CT scan days before his death, a procedure which could have shown his shunt was blocked.

The case was settled out of court after Glen’s inquest recommended changes were implemented to prevent future deaths happening in similar circumstances.However, his parents have slammed the treatment Glen received as ‘negligent’ and demanded Barnsley Hospital apologise.

Scott Haslam, a medical negligence specialist with Raleys Solicitors, is representing Mr Bonson’s family.

He said: “We contacted the hospital as we believed his treatment had been negligent.

“It was our contention Glen should have been admitted to hospital immediately on his first visit – on January 11 – for more investigations.

“Given his history, altered state of consciousness and the lack of evidence of an infection, they should have prioritised investigations to rule out a shunt blockage and they failed to perform a CT scan as scheduled.

“Had any of these things occurred, Glen’s clinicians would have been alert to the possibility the shunt was blocked.

“However, he did not receive that scan and, to our dismay and the concern of the coroner, there was no note in the medical records to explain why this was.”

A post mortem recorded the cause of Glen’s death as being cardiorespiratory arrest, secondary to brain stem compression, due to raised intracranial tension, secondary to congenital hydrocephalus with shunt malfunction.

Mrs Bonson, who said the majority of the settlement had paid her son’s funeral expenses, said she and her family were outraged by the way the hospital had behaved.

She said: “From the day we lost Glen, the callous nature with which we have been treated has been nothing short of disgraceful.

“It was hard enough to lose our wonderful Glen in such horrific circumstances, but for them to not even apologise – even in the face of such criticism from the coroner – has just added insult to injury.

“We have lost a wonderful son, our other children have lost their brother and a beloved and loving member of our family. This case was never about money – we just wanted them to say they’re sorry.”

The hospital apologised for the ‘distress’ caused by the ‘events surrounding’ Glen’s death.

A hospital spokesman said: “We offer our sincere condolences to the family and loved ones of Mr Bonson.

“We apologise for the distress and upset that the events surrounding Mr Bonson’s death have caused.”