A nurse who failed to identify a patient who died at Stafford Hospital was diabetic has been struck off while a colleague has been cautioned.
Gillian Astbury, aged 66, died at the hospital in April 2007 after not receiving insulin.
Stafford nurses Jeannette Coulson and Ann King were found guilty of misconduct by the Nursing and Midwifery Council panel.
King has been struck off by the panel, while Coulson was given a caution for a period of three years. King was also found to have lied about having changed patients’ dressings and giving them medication, while Coulson admitted swearing at staff.
The pair had failed to carry out blood-sugar level tests on Ms Astbury, from Hednesford, the panel heard. She was admitted to Stafford Hospital a week after suffering a stroke on April 1, 2007. She did not receive insulin for 48 hours, and was discovered collapsed in a bed at 10.30pm on April 10.
The panel ruled that King needed to be struck off ‘to protect the public’.
Ms Astbury’s daughter Kate Beeson said: “While we are happy that the conclusion of the hearing draws a line under the case, whatever the ruling, nothing can bring my mother back, and nothing can truly reflect the severity of the nurses’ negligence.
“We have been fighting for justice for several, very tiring years. Since her tragic death, I have been unable to put my mother to rest.
“The judgment, and all of the effort that has gone into getting to this stage, will be completely in vain if others in a similar position do not step out and make their voices heard.
“It is important that those responsible are brought to account and people need to speak up in order to make that happen.”
Managerial failings which impacted on clinical standards on the ward, inappropriate use of language and the inadequate care given to the dying woman were all areas of concern.
The trust is itself facing a prosecution over Ms Astbury’s death under the Health and Safety at Work Act. It follows the conclusion of the Francis Inquiry into events at Stafford Hospital between 2005 and 2009 uncovered a series of appalling care.
Both nurses are no longer working at the hospital and Mid Staffordshire NHS Foundation Trust has apologised.
Colin Ovington, Director of Nursing at Mid Staffordshire NHS Foundation Trust, said: “Our thoughts remain with the family and friends of Gillian Astbury and we apologise for the appalling care Ms Astbury received at our hospital in April 2007.”