A patient is claiming compensation for an eye infection due to poor sanitation in the treatment room that resulted in his loss of sight in one eye.
The unnamed patient attended the Ophthalmic Department of the Cheltenham General Hospital in December 2015 for an intravitreal injection – a routine procedure in which medicine is delivered close to the retina via an injection into the vitreous jelly-like area of the eye.
Soon after the treatment, the patient developed endophthalmitis – a known complication of intraocular surgery that affects the internal coats of the eye. The infection led to the patient losing his sight in the treated eye.
The patient alleged that the room in which the injection had been administered had not been properly cleaned, and that it was poor sanitation that was responsible for him contracting such a severe eye infection rather than it being a complication of his treatment.
An investigation into the patient´s allegations was undertaken – during which it was found that the area around the sink was cluttered, and that dust was present on several surfaces including the theatre light, and that trolleys were not properly dried after they had been sterilised.
It was also found during the investigation that clinicians contravened recommendations to leave antiseptic in the patients´ eyes for a minimum of three minutes before commencing treatment. After the report of the investigation was released, the patient sought legal advice and claimed compensation for an eye infection due to poor sanitation.
Negligence was admitted by the Gloucester Royal NHS Foundation Trust and negotiations have started to resolve the claim for compensation for an eye infection due to poor sanitation amid concerns that other patients may have developed eye infections due to the hospital´s negligence. Up to 9,000 intravitreal injections are administered at the Cheltenham General Hospital each year.