THE family of a war hero who underwent amputations after receiving “terrible” treatment at a Royal British Legion care home has received a five-figure payout.
Grandfather-of-six David Jones, who served in the Royal Air Force during the Second World War, was admitted to hospital nine times after becoming a resident at Lister House care home in Ripon, North Yorkshire - one of six Poppy Homes nationwide.
The 88-year-old dementia patient had surgery to amputate his toes and treatment for infections, pressure sores, hypoglycaemic attacks and blood poisioning after several instances of negligence at the home and at Harrogate Hospital between August 2008 and July 2009.
His son John, of Harrogate, said: “It was a disgrace to the British Royal Legion that this happened. We are so disappointed, it was just run like a circus.”
He said his father was always of smart appearance but alarm bells started ringing when he became dishevelled and began going in and out of hospital.
Mr Jones, 51, said: “He was just a total mess. When you entered his room the stench of rotten flesh hit you in the face. On numerous occasions I found him sitting in his own faeces.”
Lawyers Irwin Mitchell investigated and found many instances of negligent care including incomplete nursing records, a failure to carry out inspections and assessments, delays in referring his dangerously fluctuating blood glucose readings and poor pressure sore management.
Mr Jones was moved to a different nursing care home where he was nursed back to health and suffered no further injuries. He died last year, aged 91, of natural causes.
Lawyer James Thompson, who secured an out-of-court settlement from the care home and Harrogate and District NHS Foundation, said: “David was let down at the time he needed help most when he was a vulnerable patient suffering from dementia.
“We hope this case serves as a reminder to medical professionals and highlights that sub-standard treatment is not acceptable.”
A Harrogate & District NHS Foundation Trust spokesman said: “The trust takes patient safety extremely seriously and reviews all cases such as this to see what opportunities there are to learn from them.”
A spokesman for the Royal British Legion said: “The quality of care at Legion homes is consistently high, and our staff work hard to deliver this standard of service to all residents.”