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Coroner's verdict on hospital death; DOCTOR'S SON CONCERNED.

THE family of a man who died at Coventry's Walsgrave Hospital are unhappy with the level of care he received in the hours before his death, a coroner heard.

Dr Gilbert Boye died, aged 69, from a heart attack at the hospital on the morning of June 16 last year.

Dr Boye, who was a medical professor at the University of Ghana Medical School in Africa, was an expert in the field of plant medicine.

He was visiting family near Coventry's Canal Basin when he was taken ill, it was stated at an inquest into his death, held at Coventry on Tuesday.

He had been suffering from a catalogue of complaints, including arterial disease, deep-vein thrombosis and hypertension, when he suffered a haemorrhage at his daughter's house, Coventry coroner David Sarginson heard.

He was taken to Walsgrave's emergency department in an ambulance but died of heart and respiratory failure, arising from the haemorrhage, a few hours later.

A statement from Dr Boye's son Harold Boye, a doctor in Chicago, Illinois, was read out at the hearing, in which he said: "In my opinion, my father's death is one that should never have occurred.

"It happened because of insufficient emergency room observation."

Mr Sarginson said: "Dr Boye died from a grave medical condition, and, while it was not treated as it might have been, I don't know whether it was the cause of death.

"He was very, very sick."

Recording a narrative verdict, Mr Sarginson said that between 8.30am and 11.30am on June 16, 2003, in the emergency admissions unit at Walsgrave Hospital, Dr Boye died from a grave medical condition which was not treated as it might have been.

The new narrative verdict came in under reforms following the Harold Shipman inquiry which changed the way verdicts are recorded, doing away with terms like "suicide" or "misadventure", and replacing them with a short narrative account of the facts of the death.

Speaking after the hearing, Alice Casey, chief operating officer for University Hospitals Coventry and Warwickshire NHS Trust, which runs Walsgrave, said: "We would like to extend our sincere condolences to Dr Boye's family.

"The coroner's independent expert advised that Dr Boye was extremely unwell on his arrival at Walsgrave and the evidence indicates that different management would not have prevented Dr Boye's sad death.

"Regardless of this, we would like to reassure Dr Boye's family that we have reviewed Dr Boye's care to identify any areas where lessons could be learned and further improvements made."
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Publication:Coventry Evening Telegraph (England)
Date:Jul 8, 2004
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