London

Husband's complaint after suspected food poisoning death

The Railway Hotel pub
Image caption The pub is closed as a "mark of respect"

A hospital in east London has received a written complaint from the husband of a woman who died after falling ill following a Christmas Day pub lunch.

Della Callagher died two days after eating at the Railway Hotel in Hornchurch where 30 other people also became ill.

She went to Queen's Hospital in Romford on Boxing Day and was sent home the same day.

The hospital has said she was given appropriate treatment and advice.

A spokeswoman for Barking, Havering and Redbridge University Hospitals NHS Trust said the complaint was received from John Callagher on 28 December.

Mr Callagher told BBC London he was angry that doctors told his wife she could go home after receiving an injection.

'Accepted practice'

Dr Mike Gill, medical director for Barking, Havering and Redbridge University Hospitals NHS Trust, said the patient was given appropriate treatment and advice.

"The trust followed accepted medical practice," he said. "We will be fully reviewing the case."

The Health Protection Agency is investigating the case after the Clostridium perfringens bacterium was found in samples from affected diners.

The Clostridium perfringens bacterium is a common cause of food poisoning and affects mostly red meat or poultry.

The HPA has said it is rare for a person to die as a result of food poisoning.

A Havering Council spokesman said it appeared to be a "serious but isolated" incident.

Mrs Callagher's funeral was due to take place on Saturday. The Railway Hotel closed for the day as a "mark of respect".

A spokeswoman for Mitchells and Butlers, which runs the pub, said it was co-operating fully with the council to ascertain the cause or source of the alleged food poisoning.

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