Taunton Hospital under Fire over Vanguard Eye Operations

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Musgrove Park Hospital in Taunton is braced for a rash of compensation claims after half of patients who had basic cataract operations there earlier this year suffered unexplained problems, including blurred vision and swollen corneas.

The operations were carried out by a private company, Vanguard Healthcare, brought in by the hospital to try to clear a backlog, partly due to ophthalmic staff leaving the hospital Trust. The contract with Vanguard has now been terminated and their mobile surgery unit quarantined. Many patients affected have had to come back for treatment, but some may need further surgery in the future.

The operations to remove and replace clouded lenses are routine. Usually only 1 in 400 patients will suffer any kind of complication. The hospital has been unable so far to determine what has caused the problem, but its medical director, Dr Colin Close, has indicated that the Trust would have to deal with any medical negligence compensation claims which arise as a result.

Cataracts are one of few eye conditions that can be treated and it is the Trust’s concern that patients will lose confidence in what is supposed to be a safe and effective procedure.

Slee Blackwell Solicitors in Taunton have specialist experience in dealing with medical negligence claims. If you have had problems following routine eye surgery at Musgrove Park Hospital, Taunton, and wish to discuss a possible compensation claim, free of charge and entirely without obligation, please contact our helpline on 01823 354545.