Patients of Darlington 'misconduct' consultant were unaware of investigation, solicitors say

TREATMENT BLUNDERS: Darlington Memorial Hospital

TREATMENT BLUNDERS: Darlington Memorial Hospital

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SOLICITORS representing patients of a consultant who made mistakes while operating on women at Darlington Memorial Hospital say some clients were unaware their treatment was being investigated.

Law firm Bolt Burdon Kemp acts on behalf of a number of women concerned about treatment they received from Dr Benjamin Ononeze, including those whose specific cases appear to have been anonymously investigated by the Medical Practitioners Tribunal Service (MPTS), part of the General Medical Council (GMC).

Dr Ononeze, who worked as an obstetrics and gynaecology consultant, was found guilty of serious misconduct at the MPTS hearing in Manchester last October.

The panel found his actions ‘caused patients unnecessary suffering and put them at significant risk’.

Although he was allowed to continue working, conditions were placed on his registration for 12 months, to allow him to undergo retraining.

The law firm said it was ‘regrettable’ that no attempt was apparently made to inform patients of Dr Ononeze that their cases were being investigated, albeit with their personal details redacted.

Catherine Bell, a solicitor specialising in obstetric and gynaecological claims at Bolt Burdon Kemp, said: “Our clients were understandably shocked and distressed to learn, first that Dr Ononeze had been investigated by the GMC and second, that in some cases their own treatment may have been specifically considered.

“Patient safety must always be the top priority.

“In circumstances like this, where concerns have been raised, it is essential that a thorough and open investigation take place.”

Ms Bell called on NHS bosses to conduct a full review of all Dr Ononeze’s patients and to identify and contact anyone who may have been treated inappropriately or otherwise put at risk.

She added: “It is vital that any women worried about their treatment seek independent legal advice so that their concerns can be investigated.”

Dr Ononeze also saw patients at Bishop Auckland Hospital and BMI Woodlands Hospital in Darlington.

At the MPTS panel hearing in Manchester, which related to his performance at Darlington Memorial Hospital between February and April 2011, Dr Ononeze admitted making serious mistakes during surgery to remove an ovarian cyst which resulted in a hysterectomy and attempting an inappropriate and “traumatic” delivery using forceps.

The mother of the baby in that case required further surgery to repair internal injuries sustained during the emergency caesarean.

Comments (7)

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8:02am Thu 20 Mar 14

oliviaden6 says...

The NHS is a secret service, Why is this happening time and time again. It has been outlawed so that the NHS is more transparent, but the practice of covering up investigations is still going on and on, relatives and even existing patients need transparency so as they have confidence in the Consultants and Doctors as well as the staff as a whole, Accidents happen but with all to much regularity, mistakes and accidents in hospital are a no no we go there for help treatment advise and most of all CARE it is sad that individuals are being grossly let down on certain fronts.
The NHS is a secret service, Why is this happening time and time again. It has been outlawed so that the NHS is more transparent, but the practice of covering up investigations is still going on and on, relatives and even existing patients need transparency so as they have confidence in the Consultants and Doctors as well as the staff as a whole, Accidents happen but with all to much regularity, mistakes and accidents in hospital are a no no we go there for help treatment advise and most of all CARE it is sad that individuals are being grossly let down on certain fronts. oliviaden6
  • Score: 1

2:46pm Thu 20 Mar 14

tabby67 says...

It is actually no surprise that it is Darlington Memorial again!!! I would rather stuck pins in my eyes than be treated at that hospital its shocking!
It is actually no surprise that it is Darlington Memorial again!!! I would rather stuck pins in my eyes than be treated at that hospital its shocking! tabby67
  • Score: -3

2:46pm Thu 20 Mar 14

tabby67 says...

stick sorry not stuck
stick sorry not stuck tabby67
  • Score: 0

8:06pm Thu 20 Mar 14

Merrybent says...

I has two procedures carried out from Mr Ononeze on two separate difficult pregnancies. He was kind, compassionate and informative, his opinion was back up by the specialists at the Freeman and although this report I highlights the scrutiny involved in healthcare, I for one am glad he was my consultant!
I has two procedures carried out from Mr Ononeze on two separate difficult pregnancies. He was kind, compassionate and informative, his opinion was back up by the specialists at the Freeman and although this report I highlights the scrutiny involved in healthcare, I for one am glad he was my consultant! Merrybent
  • Score: 2

10:51pm Thu 20 Mar 14

pandorica says...

It really annoys me that people complaing about our NHS! You have 2 choices, go private if you would rather stick pins in your eyes than be treated at DMH. In other countries there is national health care and its all private or does not exist at all. The very fact this law company has made headlines is they placed full length advertisements in the papers asking women who had been under his care to come forward. Yes so they could make a nice sum of money representing compensation seekers. Next time all you moaners have something wrong with you, go find a private GP, hospital to treat you, because I guarantee as soon as it turns out major, you get sent back to a NHS hospital anyway. The staff work dam hard and all they get is ungrateful wingers trying to make money out of it. Grhhhhh
It really annoys me that people complaing about our NHS! You have 2 choices, go private if you would rather stick pins in your eyes than be treated at DMH. In other countries there is national health care and its all private or does not exist at all. The very fact this law company has made headlines is they placed full length advertisements in the papers asking women who had been under his care to come forward. Yes so they could make a nice sum of money representing compensation seekers. Next time all you moaners have something wrong with you, go find a private GP, hospital to treat you, because I guarantee as soon as it turns out major, you get sent back to a NHS hospital anyway. The staff work dam hard and all they get is ungrateful wingers trying to make money out of it. Grhhhhh pandorica
  • Score: 3

11:17am Fri 21 Mar 14

Homshaw1 says...

A consultant should be able to deal with an ovarian cyst without the patient ending up with a hysterectomy.

Anyone in that situation is hardly a winger.
A consultant should be able to deal with an ovarian cyst without the patient ending up with a hysterectomy. Anyone in that situation is hardly a winger. Homshaw1
  • Score: 1

10:01pm Fri 21 Mar 14

pandorica says...

Homshaw1 wrote:
A consultant should be able to deal with an ovarian cyst without the patient ending up with a hysterectomy.

Anyone in that situation is hardly a winger.
I agree thou we do not know the medical reasons or the medical history as to why this was done. My point is for those who came forward seeking compensation when they see the legal firms advertisements. Funny how they never had any issues before this, but then it clicked they could get a nice cash payout so win win situation for legal eagles and comp seekers. I have been a patient at DMH and JCUH and I swear I owe my life to them all. The care was excellent and I am tired of people moaning about our NHS. Go look round other country's health care and compare it. If you don't like the NHS pay to go private.
[quote][p][bold]Homshaw1[/bold] wrote: A consultant should be able to deal with an ovarian cyst without the patient ending up with a hysterectomy. Anyone in that situation is hardly a winger.[/p][/quote]I agree thou we do not know the medical reasons or the medical history as to why this was done. My point is for those who came forward seeking compensation when they see the legal firms advertisements. Funny how they never had any issues before this, but then it clicked they could get a nice cash payout so win win situation for legal eagles and comp seekers. I have been a patient at DMH and JCUH and I swear I owe my life to them all. The care was excellent and I am tired of people moaning about our NHS. Go look round other country's health care and compare it. If you don't like the NHS pay to go private. pandorica
  • Score: 0

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