Stockport, Manchester: Nurse Charged Over Hospital Deaths Of Five Paients

23 Jul

A 27-year-old nurse has been charged in connection with the deaths of five patients at Stepping Hill Hospital in Stockport.

Rebecca Leighton has been charged with six counts of causing damage with intent to endanger life or being reckless to whether life is being endangered.

She is accused of tampering with medical products, saline ampoules and saline bags at Stepping Hill Hospital.

Leighton, who is also charged with one count of theft of medicine, will appear at Manchester Magistrates Court later.

The Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) said fitness to practise proceedings with relation to Leighton were under way.

The organisation said a hearing to decide whether she should be suspended from the register would be held as quickly as possible.

 Five deaths at Stepping Hill Hospital have been linked to an investigation into contaminated saline.

Patients Derek Weaver, 83, Vera Pearson, 84, George Keep, 84, Arnold Lancaster, 71, and 44-year-old mother-of-two Tracey Arden all died in unexplained circumstances.

The alarm was raised when a senior nurse reported a higher than normal number of patients with “unexplained” low blood sugar levels.

This led police to investigate saline containers at the hospital.

Insulin was found in a batch of 36 saline ampoules in a storeroom close to wards A1 and A3 of the hospital.

The maximum sentence for criminal damage intending to endanger life or being reckless as to whether life would be endangered is life imprisonment.

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