Award-winning policeman to get £600k compensation after hospital blunders left him needing his leg AMPUTATED
An award winning police officer is in line for a £600,000 compensation payout after bungling doctors delayed his treatment for so long they were forced to amputate his LEG.
Dennis Stewart, 52, was left waiting for 13-and-a-half hours in A&E when he was rushed into hospital with a blood clot in his left leg.
Shockingly, doctors at Nottingham City Hospital originally dismissed the pain as CRAMP on December 30, 2010.
But he was rushed back to the same hospital the following day after waking up in the middle of the night in agonising pain.
Despite discovering tell-tale signs of a dangerous clot, Mr Stewart was forced to wait for over half a DAY for an ambulance to transfer him to Queen’s Medical Centre – just four miles away.
Because of the delay specialists were unable to save his limb despite an operation on New Years Day – putting to an end his 20-year career as a policeman.
Now Mr Stewart is set to receive a bumper compensation payout after Nottingham University Hospitals NHS Trust agreed the delay in his treatment was unacceptable.
The former Pc, from Nottingham, said yesterday: “I waited far too long to see a doctor and I’ve paid my price.
“I don’t want to criticise any doctors or nurses. They work hard – it’s the system which doesn’t work.
“On the day it happened I woke up in the middle of the night with such searing pain in my leg that I called a friend and got them to take me to Nottingham City Hospital.
“I was there by 3.30am, eventually they told me a specialist would have to come from another hospital to see my leg.
“At about 1pm a nurse said she would get an ambulance for me to transfer me to the Queen’s Medical Centre.
“But it wasn’t until around 5pm that they eventually brought the ambulance – I was in agony.
“They rushed me into theatre once I got there – but I had lost all feeling and movement in my toes by then.
“After the operation when I first looked at my leg they told me I might be shocked.
“Now I’ve seen murders and suicides as a policeman and I looked down and it did not look like a leg.
“They amputated the next day – I was devastated.”
The blood clot formed while Mr Stewart was undergoing treatment for a rare form of nasal cancer which had developed behind his left eye.
His solicitors have told him to expect a total payment of up to £617,000 after the Trust admitted partial liability.
Mr Stewart added: “Firstly I want to get a new leg, the money is for my quality of life; I need to make that as good as possible.
“I don’t mind the cancer, but it would have been a lot easier to deal with with my leg.
“I miss my salsa dancing, I miss my karate. Now I want to get a bungalow I can walk around easier and go and see the world.
“I just want the NHS to sort it out and make sure it never happens again.”
James Bell, a clinical negligence lawyer representing Mr Stewart, said: “Dennis’ tragic situation is one that could have been so easily avoided were the right procedures in place.
“He should never have lost his leg.
“This case is not about bashing the NHS, but ensuring that Dennis receives justice and is able to enjoy the best quality of life.”
Dr Stephen Fowlie, medical director at Nottingham University Hospitals, yesterday apologised for the error.
He said: “We are very sorry Mr Stewart’s treatment was delayed, with such distressing consequences.
“We hope to reach a final settlement as soon as possible.”
In 2011 Mr Stewart was presented with a lifetime achievement award after returning to work following the amputation.
During his 21-year career he was twice commended for persuading a suicidal man not to throw himself off a multi-storey car park and for stopping thieves during a post-office raid.