King Edward VII’s Hospital in London has condemned a prank phone call that led to the death of a nurse, as her family struggled to come to terms with the tragedy.
In a letter to the parent company of Australian radio station 2day FM, hospital chairman Lord Glenarthur said he wanted to “protest” against the “extremely foolish” gag, which he branded “truly appalling”.
His comments follow the apparent suicide on Friday of nurse Jacintha Saldanha, 46, who was on duty at the hospital when she was duped by DJs Mel Greig and Michael Christian into helping reveal details about Kate Middleton’s health.
Lord Glenarthur said her death was “tragic beyond words”.
His letter to Southern Cross Austereo said the immediate consequence of the station’s “premeditated and ill-considered actions” led to the “humiliation” of Ms Saldanha and another nurse.
“I appreciate that you cannot undo the damage which has been done, but I would urge you to take steps to ensure that such an incident could never be repeated,” he added.
A spokesman for the private London hospital, where the pregnant Duchess of Cambridge had been treated for a severe form of morning sickness, said the letter was sent yesterday.
Ms Saldanha was pronounced dead at staff accommodation close to the hospital.
Ms Saldanha’s partner Benedict Barboza, 49, and their teenage son and daughter, aged 14 and 16, were said to be “very, very shocked and unhappy at the tragedy”.
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