Appointment reminder sent to woman... eight months after she died

This Is Wiltshire: Kevin Jordan, who lost his wife to cancer last year, with one of the letters from the hospital Kevin Jordan, who lost his wife to cancer last year, with one of the letters from the hospital

Hospital staff sent Kevin Jordan two reminder letters for mammogram appointments his wife had to attend – more than eight months after she died in their care.

Jacqueline Jordan died aged 55 on September 27 2013 after a six-month battle with breast cancer, but this did not stop administrators at Great Western Hospital issuing urgent reminders for her to attend the site this month.

The emotional scars left with Kevin, 57, after the death of his childhood sweetheart had barely healed when he received the first letter at the end of May.

“It just seems like turning over old ground for me,” he said. “I don’t know, it’s just quite sad really.

“It should never have happened. I could have understood if it had come from Oxford, where she received some care before her death, but to come from the place it actually happened is below the belt.

“You would have thought they would’ve seen the records straight away.”

What made it worse for the grieving husband was the appointment set by GWH in the first letter was for June 11, Kevin’s birthday.

Kevin, who works as a double glazer, received the first letter at the end of May with details of the first appointment, which, though difficult, he accepted as a simple error.

His daughter Charlene then phoned GWH and brought the matter to their attention. She was told, Kevin said, they would be sending out a letter of apology.

“We phoned up and told them she had passed. It doesn’t appear they were listening because I have received another letter,” said Kevin, of Withy Close, Royal Wootton Bassett.

“When my daughter called they said they were going to send out a letter of apology, but instead of that they just sent out another letter of appointment.”

The second letter was received last Friday, dated two days earlier for Tuesday, when Jacqueline’s first scheduled appointment was listed for and after Kevin’s initial complaint.

Suzie Ferrari, Breast Centre manager at GWH, said: “We are deeply sorry for the distress this must have caused.

“This must have been very upsetting for the family and is unacceptable. “This mistake was human error and we will be tightening up our processes to reduce the risk of something like this happening again.”

Kevin met Jacqueline when they were 16 and 15 respectively, and had been together for 40 years when she died.

Kevin was working at the former RA Lister factory in Wroughton when he would walk past Jacqueline’s school each day.

“We would meet at dinner times at the bottom of her school field each day and talk through the fence,” he said.

She discovered her breast cancer at an early stage in March 2012, when her GP referred her to Great Western Hospital for a biopsy, which confirmed the worst.

She received chemotherapy in Oxford and appeared to be making a good recovery but her condition deteriorated in autumn last year.

When she was admitted to GWH in September, Kevin was told she had two weeks to live, but she died the next day.

Comments (5)

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3:10pm Wed 18 Jun 14

swindonurock says...

It's sad that Kevin lost his wife, and deepest sympathies, but I really don't think this should be headline news.

Mistakes happen; incompetence happens; poor administration happens; it's just life. I'm sure it must happen numerous times a day up and down the country, both from the NHS and other businesses ... dentists, banks ... etc.

Still, very sad that Kevin lost his partner of so long, and best wishes to him for the future.
It's sad that Kevin lost his wife, and deepest sympathies, but I really don't think this should be headline news. Mistakes happen; incompetence happens; poor administration happens; it's just life. I'm sure it must happen numerous times a day up and down the country, both from the NHS and other businesses ... dentists, banks ... etc. Still, very sad that Kevin lost his partner of so long, and best wishes to him for the future. swindonurock
  • Score: 13

4:43pm Wed 18 Jun 14

LordCharles says...

Computers don't care if you are dead or alive. Move on and stop worrying about this sad matter. Ask them to make sure she is taken off their mailing list (that could be quite difficult once you are in the system). Today 22,000 children will die from poverty. Today 1000 Syrians, Ukrainians and Iraqis will die from civil war. Today there will be 250,000 abortions around the world.
Computers don't care if you are dead or alive. Move on and stop worrying about this sad matter. Ask them to make sure she is taken off their mailing list (that could be quite difficult once you are in the system). Today 22,000 children will die from poverty. Today 1000 Syrians, Ukrainians and Iraqis will die from civil war. Today there will be 250,000 abortions around the world. LordCharles
  • Score: -14

5:53pm Wed 18 Jun 14

The Witch says...

LordCharles wrote:
Computers don't care if you are dead or alive. Move on and stop worrying about this sad matter. Ask them to make sure she is taken off their mailing list (that could be quite difficult once you are in the system). Today 22,000 children will die from poverty. Today 1000 Syrians, Ukrainians and Iraqis will die from civil war. Today there will be 250,000 abortions around the world.
Really think your comment was unhelpful. We're all aware of what is going on in the wider world but this poor man is still trying to come to terms with losing his childhood sweetheart and it takes a lot longer than eight months believe me.
The first mistake by the hospital is perhaps understandable that it is down to human error but when it happens for a second time after it has been reported to them is unforgivable, computers are only as good as the operators that use them.
[quote][p][bold]LordCharles[/bold] wrote: Computers don't care if you are dead or alive. Move on and stop worrying about this sad matter. Ask them to make sure she is taken off their mailing list (that could be quite difficult once you are in the system). Today 22,000 children will die from poverty. Today 1000 Syrians, Ukrainians and Iraqis will die from civil war. Today there will be 250,000 abortions around the world.[/p][/quote]Really think your comment was unhelpful. We're all aware of what is going on in the wider world but this poor man is still trying to come to terms with losing his childhood sweetheart and it takes a lot longer than eight months believe me. The first mistake by the hospital is perhaps understandable that it is down to human error but when it happens for a second time after it has been reported to them is unforgivable, computers are only as good as the operators that use them. The Witch
  • Score: 3

7:16pm Wed 18 Jun 14

beach1e says...

what do you expect from overpaid admin staff at the hospital?efficiency?
what do you expect from overpaid admin staff at the hospital?efficiency? beach1e
  • Score: -8

6:12pm Thu 19 Jun 14

greenpacer says...

They should re-look at their systems and processes and make sure they function so no mistakes like this ever happen again. Managers do your job and find the culprit.
They should re-look at their systems and processes and make sure they function so no mistakes like this ever happen again. Managers do your job and find the culprit. greenpacer
  • Score: 1

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