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Jersey patient says compensation will not solve health failings

A woman who was "let down" by Jersey's health services said compensation will not make her feel better.

Emma Hammond said she had been left in chronic pain after being prescribed anti-depressants that did not work. A report said patients were misdiagnosed by staff who relied on pharmaceutical companies for training which was likely to be "heavily biased".

Jersey's health scrutiny panel chairman said the report must be acted on.

The Royal College of Physicians' review said Jersey's rheumatology service was "well below" an acceptable standard with some cases of "no evidence of clinical examination" and incorrect diagnoses.

'Very concerning'

Ms Hammond said she did not feel like she was given good enough support or enough investigation was done into her condition.

Lawyers have indicated more than 100 people could take legal action against Jersey's health department over the matter, but Ms Hammond said compensation will not stop her pain.

She said: "I've continued to have chronic pain and inflammation in my joints that is impacting my quality of life and its gradually continued to get worse.

"It just makes me feel really let down by the system and the department.

"It is very concerning because the amount of people that could have been affected."

Call for change

Deputy Rob Ward, chairman of the States' health scrutiny panel, said whoever the new Chief Minister - who will be appointed tomorrow - selects as health minister needs to enact change quickly based on the report.

He added the problems highlighted were systemic and the actions that needed to happen were "clear". Mr Ward said: "There needs to be clear governance and if that governance doesn't exist, these things can happen. "So we need to look in terms of the governance and the structures that are in the health service so that things cannot slip through the net as they seem to have done in this case."


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