‘A surgeon left a medical specimen bag inside me after hernia op’

Professor Katie Urch, Chief Medical Officer at University Hospitals Sussex NHS Foundation Trust, said: “Our surgery staff are committed to delivering the best, safest care to our patients, often in challenging situations.

“Surgeons do not work as individuals, they work collaboratively in teams. Those teams are highly skilled, performing complex surgery that is never without some risk.

“Their outcomes are continuously and closely monitored – both internally and externally – and whenever our care falls short of our high standards, we take immediate action to learn and improve.”

The BBC has been investigating patient safety concerns at University Hospitals Sussex NHS Foundation Trust for ten months.

In 2023, four whistleblowers told the BBC patients had died unnecessarily while others were “effectively maimed”. The whistleblowers also complained of a “mafia-like” management culture.

The trust previously said its main priority was delivering “safe and effective care”, that data does not reflect allegations of unnecessary deaths, and that there was no evidence of a top-down toxic culture.

Some eight years on from his own hernia operation, Mr Hadrys told Newsnight of the lasting negative impact on his health.

“There’s no doubt whatsoever that I’m suffering,” he says. “It’s affected me. I have a weak abdomen now, I can’t really lift anything heavy.”

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