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Patient deaths spark contamination probe

A police investigation has been launched over the deaths of two hospital patients who had their medication “interfered with”.

Staff at Stepping Hill Hospital in Stockport contacted the police following the discovery of contaminated saline vials.

An unusually high number of patients experiencing “unexplained” low sugar levels on one ward alerted an experienced nurse that something may be wrong, leading to police being called on July 11.

A spokesman for Stockport NHS Foundation Trust said: “The hospital found that some saline ampoules had been interfered with and, as a result, commenced an immediate investigation.

“Greater Manchester Police has been asked to assist with the investigation, which is at a very early stage.”

Officers are trying to determine if the deaths were caused by the contamination.

Dr Chris Burke, Stockport NHS Foundation Trust’s chief executive, said patients and relatives of anyone who may have been affected are currently being contacted.

“The trust has done an initial check of all ampoules in the hospital and is carrying out a number of additional measures to safeguard patients,” he added.


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