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Bath hospital awaits sentencing over legionella death

19 January 2018

Sentencing has been delayed for the Royal United Hospital (RUH) Bath by Bristol Crown Court after it admitted a breach of health and safety laws at the end of 2017.

This followed the prosecution of the hospital after the death of a former cancer patient from Legionnaires' disease in July 2015.

The 68-year-old man had been an inpatient at the hospital when he contracted the disease.

A subsequent inquest had found that this had been contracted through the water supply to the William Budd ward, where the man had been treated for cancer.

This had resulted in the hospital pleading guilty to the charge of failing in its duty towards the health and safety of "a person other than an employee" during the case brought by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE).

RUH had been prosecuted under Section 3(1) of the Health and Safety at Work, etc, Act 1974 on 13 December 2017.

An HSE spokesperson said the case had followed an investigation into how the hospital "managed risks to patients from legionella bacteria in its hot and cold water systems between 1 July 2009 and 28 August 2015".

The hospital's guilty plea had been acknowledged and the HSE said it would issue a further statement after sentencing takes place.

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