Woman dies after she’s sent home by Royal London A&E without doctor seeing her

22:20 24 May 2012

The death of a 20-year-old women who went to hospital in east London feeling ill could have been avoided had she been seen by a doctor, a coroner has ruled.

Kajsa Karlsson complained of coughing and flu-like symptoms when she walked into the A&E department at the Royal London in Whitechapel—but was sent home without a doctor examining her.

She was found dead at her home in Bow four days later with pneumonia and complications with fluid pressure on her lungs.

Her parents arrived from Sweden for the two-hour inquest at Poplar Coroner’s Court today, where pathologist Prof Michael Sheaff gave cause of death as empyema and bilateral lower lobar pneumonia.

Coroner Dr Shirley Radcliffe said: “It is more likely than not that had further tests been undertaken and an examination made by a doctor, she would have received antibiotics and been monitored more closely over the following week and her death avoided.”

A narrative verdict was recorded which stated that Kajsa attended the A&E on February 28 and was assessed and discharged without seeing a doctor—then found dead at her home on Saturday, March 3.

An internal hospital investigation had been carried out by A&E consultant Ian Morrison, who gave details to the hearing. Statements were also made by charge nurse Geoffrey Bellhouse, urgent care nurse Suhaila Khamfar-Sookhan and London Ambulance officer Benjamin Murtagh.

Kajsa’s father Peter Karlsson and her partner Pawel Jaison also made statements to the court.

The hospital NHS trust said tonight in a statement to the Advertiser: “Barts Health has offered our deepest sympathies to Miss Karlsson’s family and assured them that lessons have been learnt as a result of this tragedy.

“A full internal investigation was carried out following her death and urgent measures were taken so that the discharge of patients from A&E is now only undertaken by Advanced Nurse practitioners or doctors.”

Empyema is usually caused by an infection that spreads from the lungs. It leads to a build-up of fluid in the pleural space that puts pressure on the lungs, causing bacterial pneumonia. Symptoms include chest pain, dry cough, sweating, fever and chills, as well as general discomfort, shortage of breath and weight loss.

Latest Stories

Yesterday, 18:22
The man was found seriously injured in Meridian Avenue, close to the Pickett Flyover (Picture: Google Streetview)

A man was found lying in the middle of the road with multiple injuries in the early hours of Saturday morning in a suspected hit and run in Enfield.

Read more
Yesterday, 18:48
Mitch and Janis Winehouse pose next to the statue of their late daughter Amy in Camden (Photo by Dave Hogan/Getty Images)

A life-size statue of Amy Winehouse has been unveiled by her parents in her native Camden on what would have been the Back to Black singer’s 31st birthday.

Read more
Friday, September 12, 2014
The man was slashed in the face at Stratford station on Tuesday (Photo by Dave J Hogan/Getty Images)

A man was slashed in the face in a ‘sustained attack’ on a busy train and Tube platform at Stratford station on Tuesday lunchtime.

Read more

Quirky London

Quizzes

Do you fancy yourself as a football ground know-it-all? Try our devilishly difficult quiz!

How well do you know your football stadiums? This brand new quiz from London24 will seperate the men from the boys...

Read more
Do you know your Thames truths from the porkie pies? (Photo by Mike Hewitt/Getty Images)

So, you live (or work) in London, and you think you know the river well.

Read more
Diego Costa of Chelsea exchanges words with Cesc Fabregas (Photo by Chris Brunskill/Getty Images)

Chelsea have made several personnel changes over the course of the summer as they look to mount a squad that can challenge for the title.

Read more