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Stafford Hospital whistleblower forced out of town by hate campaign

Staffordshire | News | Published:

The campaigner who exposed the Stafford Hospital scandal is being forced to leave the town after repeated death threats, abuse and the desecration of her mother's grave.

Julie Bailey, who fought to uncover shocking neglect and appalling standards of care at Mid Staffordshire NHS Foundation Trust, will quit the town by the end of the summer.

Miss Bailey formed the campaign group Cure the NHS and pushed for a public inquiry into death rates at Stafford Hospital following after her 86-year-old mother Bella died on ward 11.

She said sections of the community have turned against her with numerous threatening letters, telephone calls and vandalism to her mother's grave.

One caller told her they hoped 'she dies on the way to hospital' and she received a card 'thanking' her for her "hard work in closing Stafford Hospital". The card, which has been passed to police, reportedly read: "Thank you for closing Stafford hospital, Ha, Ha, Ha, you better now spend more time watching your mother's grave."

Miss Bailey, who runs Breaks Cafe in Stafford, said: "People have been coming into the cafe shouting that nothing happened at Mid Staffordshire, that I am lying and that there were no unnecessary deaths."

She added: "My cafe is in ruins. It is taking in about £40 or £50 a day. They are boycotting me. I will be gone by the end of the summer. I can't stay here any longer."

Miss Bailey has been subject to abuse since exposing the scandal.

West Midlands Ambulance Service sacked paramedic Murph Guest after comments were made on Facebook expressing the hope that Miss Bailey would suffer "a life-threatening illness".

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The service said Guest, who was suspended from his duties following the allegations, had been referred to the Health and Care Professions Council on charges of serious professional misconduct. He could be struck off from the profession entirely if found guilty.

Police investigated the messages but said they did not warrant criminal charges. The posts were made on the 'We support the front-line staff at Stafford Hospital' Facebook group.

Miss Bailey last week welcomed the resignation of NHS England chief Sir David Nicholson who will retire next year from his £211,000 post.

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