'She was the matriarch': Hospital apologises for deficits in care when woman died

'She was the matriarch': Hospital apologises for deficits in care when woman died

St James’s Hospital, Dublin has apologised for the “deficits in the care provided” at the hospital when a 52-year-old mother of four died there three years ago.

Jacqueline Keating who was also a grandmother was the matriarch of her family and has been laughing and joking when first admitted to the Dublin hospital, Mr Justice Michael Hanna was told, but within seven days her family said she was non-responsive.

Her widower has sued in the High Court over his wife’s death and the case is before the court for the assessment of damages only.

'Tea ladies were talking about someone dying'

He told the court when he was called to the hospital at 6am on August 2, 2016, he heard the tea ladies in the corridor talking about someone dying.

“They were talking about my wife. I was brought in to a room and I was told they had trued to resuscitate her for 25 minutes.”

He said he asked was his wife alone when she died and he said he was told there were two people with her. The court heard a subsequent report on the matter disclosed Mrs Keating died alone.

At the start of the hearing today, Counsel for St James’s Hospital Oonah McCrann SC read an apology on behalf of the hospital to the court.

In the apology, hospital CEO Lorcan Birthistle said he would like to “sincerely and unreservedly apologise for the deficits in the care that was provided at St James’s Hospital.

It added: “ We know that Jacqueline’s death has had a profound impact on you all. Please accept my deepest sympathy and apology.”

The hospital also offered its sincere and deepest sympathy to Mr Keating and his family “for the devastating loss” of Jacqueline.

Paul Keating, Galtymore Road, Drimnagh, Dublin had on behalf of his family sued St James’s Hospital, Dublin over the death of his wife on August 2,2016.

'She was the matriarch'

Mrs Keating who had surgery for a tumour in her neck at another hospital in the past and also had a history of venous thromboembolism was admitted to St James’s Hospital in July 2016.

On July 31, 2016 she started having problems with low oxygen saturations and also developed chest pains and tightness. She was recorded as being anxious and and ECG was normal. On August 2, 2016, Mrs Kennedy collapsed and died.

An autopsy later showed Mrs Keating died of a heart attack which was caused by a pulmonary embolism due to deep vein thrombosis.

It was claimed there was a failure to consider the risk factors Mrs Keating had for venous thromboembolism and a failure to properly evaluate her chest pains or leg pains.

Mr Keating told the court he and his wife had a great life before she died.

“She was the matriarch, she was a young grandmother; now some of her grandchildren will never get to know her,” he said.

He said after his wife was admitted to St James’s Hospital he and his family “kept asking for a check for clots”.

He added: “They said it would be organised. They did not do it."

Mrs Keating’s daughter Louise Hunt told the court her mother was laughing and joking walking in to the hospital, but within seven days she was non-responsive.

“They kept saying psychiatric. That was all that was in their head,” she said.

The case before Mr Justice Michael Hanna continues tomorrow.

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