Father dies after wheelchair fall

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A father died after he suffered a fall when getting out of a car into his wheelchair, an inquest heard this week.

David Maxfield, of Ettrick Drive, Bedford, hit his head on the pavement when he was returning home from a visit to his doctor with his carer on April 11.

Bedford Coroner’s Court heard that David went to Bedford Hospital, but he was made to wait for “good while” where he was constantly being sick, before he was seen by a doctor.

He was discharged from hospital after medics chose not to give him a scan, but he returned that night after his condition worsened at home.

A scan revealed a skull fracture and some bleeding and swelling, and a second scan later that night revealed hit was got a lot worse.

After returning to hospital he was transferred to Addenbrooke’s Hospital in Cambridge as he was very fidgety and confused, which he had to be anaestesised and could not be mobitored at Bedford.

After returning to Bedford his condition gredually got wosrse and he died on May 5.

His children Amy and Christian are questioning the treatment their father, who was paralysed after a previous spinal injury and suffered with a number of conditions, received when he first went to hospital and why he was not given a scan straight away.

Christian, who went to hospital with his dad after the fall, told the court: “We were in the hall for a good while with the ambulance crew, he hadn’t been seen for a “good while.”

“He was consistently vomiting and was very fidgety.

He added: “The wait did not help, The doctors and nurses were not supportive at all to be honest. If anything they saw him as over-exagerating. He was in extreme pain. “

Christian added that once his father was seen, the doctors happily discharged him, but no information was given as to how to manage a head injury,

Doctor David Small saw the deceased after he had been seen by a senior nurse and doctor.

He told the court they made a clinical decision not to give David a scan because they could not seen anything abnormal.

He said: “If a CT scan was carried out and we saw he had a fractured skull we would not have discharged him. This would have affected the way we treated him, but in my opinion, not the outcome.”

Coroner Bob Amos could not reach a decision in in the hearing, but is planning to send aout a written verdict in the next week.

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