Dudley's hospital trust hits back over death rate

Dudley’s hospital trust was among three named today for having consistently high death rates for the past three years – sparking fears of “another Mid Staffs.”

The number of patient deaths including those which occurred after surgery were recorded by the Dr Foster Hospital Guide.

The Dudley Group NHS Foundation Trust, which runs Russells Hall Hospital, was highlighted for having had high mortality rates for three years running.

Hospital bosses said they took the levels seriously. But medical director Paul Harrison said the most recent mortality rate figure provided by Dr Foster was “well within the expected range.”

He added: “In Dudley we use all three independent mortality indicators as well as our own monitoring procedures to highlight areas for potential further analysis or investigation.”

Elsewhere death rates at 12 hospital sites in the country – including Walsall Manor – were higher than expected, according to the Dr Foster guide.

The Doctor Foster Hospital Guide also says patients are being put at risk nationally because hospitals are “full to bursting”. It warns of the possibility of “another Mid Staffs”, referring to a three year period when hundreds of people died at Stafford Hospital.