Birmingham & Black Country

Dudley GP William Hampson 'wrong' for refusing patient

A GP who told a patient he would not treat her unless she apologised for allegedly swearing showed "a lack of empathy", the health ombudsman said.

Ann Abraham said Dr William Hampson, of Dudley, West Midlands, who she named, unusually, in her report, did not act in line with national guidelines.

Ms Abraham said the GP should pay £500 redress after the incident, in 2010.

The patient denied swearing at a receptionist at Northway Medical Practice, which has since apologised.

'Stormed out'

The patient, referred to as Mrs S, claimed she was "bullied" into leaving the practice.

The Ombudsman upheld the complaint of Mrs S and recommended Dr Hampson should provide a sincere apology within a month and provide financial redress of £500 for the "distress and inconvenience" he caused.

Ms Abraham said she hoped her decision to name Dr Hampson would encourage him to apologise to the woman.

Her decision to name a health worker in a report laid before parliament is the second time she has done so since taking up the post in 2002.

"My independent investigation found that, following the incident when Mrs S stormed out, the GP got things wrong," Ms Abraham stated.

Experienced 'injustice'

"As a result of his mistake and his significant part in the breakdown in the relationship with his patient, Mrs S moved to a different GP practice.

"I found that the GP's actions therefore resulted in Mrs S experiencing injustice in the form of distress and inconvenience alongside feeling bullied.

"I hope that making this story public encourages the GP to provide the long-overdue remedy to Mrs S."

A statement issued in light of the report said: "The Northway Medical Practice apologises for any upset caused to Mrs S and her family.

"As the report states, it was never our intention to start a formal removal request procedure and we apologise if the language used was misunderstood.

"Since this incident the practice has taken steps to learn lessons and ensure that this can't happen again. We cannot comment further due to patient confidentiality."

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