News and Insights
22 January 2024
Following delays, Jersey’s Health and Community Services have published the Royal College of Physicians' (“RCP”) independent review (“RCP Review”) of the Jersey Hospital Rheumatology Department. Click here to read the full report published on the gov.je website.
Overall, the RCP Review has “found the standard of care to be well below what the review team would consider acceptable for a contemporary rheumatological service”.
The RCP Review included the following findings that:
- One consultant, had not completed a recognised rheumatological training programme and was not on the specialist register for rheumatology.
- There was “limited, and often absent, handwritten evidence of the clinical interaction with the patients” as well as “no evidence of clinical examination" in some cases. With the consultant explaining himself “there was no need to write within the patient notes as they would be rarely referred to and all the relevant information would reside in his head.”
- There were a number of shortcomings including that patients received “on occasions, an incorrect diagnosis."
- Of the group of patients reviewed in depth for the report, only 1 patient was deemed to have received an overall standard of care which was acceptable.
- There were several ‘recurring themes’ from the cases which underwent review, the most notable being misdiagnosis, inappropriate prescribing of medicines (biologics) and “brief and generally uninformative” clinical notes.
In most of the cases, patients were frequently started on biologics and underwent multiple therapy switches without sufficient time for assessing effectiveness of their prescription. Some cases involved patients receiving 5 or more biologics in a short timeframe, often with prescriptions deviating from both UK and European guidelines.
Following the RCP Review, Health and Community Services, initially undertook an audit of 341 patients. It has now widened its review to approximately 2,400 patients.
We have received enquiries from over 110 patients of Jersey’s Rheumatology Department and are currently in the process of meeting with them all individually. They have suffered a range of complications and side effects, from relatively minor to the most serious. For some, the impact on their lives has been devastating and irreversible.
If you have been affected by a misdiagnosis or inappropriate prescription of medication, it is important to seek legal advice and explore your options for compensation as soon as possible.
You can speak to us confidentially. We offer a free consultation, during which we will discuss your specific claim and the claim process. Having a conversation with us does not oblige you in any way to pursue a claim.
If you have been affected by this issue and would like advice, please contact us. One of our dedicated team of lawyers are available to assist.
Click here to read the press release from the States of Jersey.