Probe after death of FGH hospital worker found Morecambe Bay trust breached health and safety law

AN investigation that followed the death of a Furness General Hospital worker who contracted coronavirus found that bosses breached health and safety law.

Watchdog the Health and Safety Executive ruled that the Morecambe NHS Trust breached regulations on safety equipment worn by staff to protect themselves during the first wave of the virus.

A seven-month long probe was conducted by HSE after FGH radiographer Simon Guest died from the virus in April 2020.

It resulted in the trust being given formal written advice after inspectors ruled there had been a breach of health and safety law.

The investigation found that not all staff had been properly fitted with masks that formed a seal to their faces.

Trust leaders told HSE they had taken action to rectify the issue.

A HSE spokesman said: “HSE conducted an investigation at University Hospitals of Morecambe Bay NHS Foundation Trust after being notified of the sad death of a colleague due to Covid-19.

“HSE has concluded its investigation.

“Our inspectors identified a breach of health and safety law resulting in formal written advice to the trust.

“The investigation identified that not all persons had received adequate face fit testing to ensure that the masks, worn as protective equipment for certain procedures, formed a tight seal to the face.

“Confirmation was provided by the trust that remedial action had been taken.”

Mr Guest was described as a ‘dedicated professional’ and a ‘devoted husband’ in tributes paid to him following his death.

Rose Byron, the lead radiographer at FGH, said Mr Guest was passionate about guitars and music, among other hobbies.

She said: “It was an honour and a privilege to have worked with him.

“He had a great passion for life and enjoyed motorbikes, nice cars, guitars and music.

“Simon will be greatly missed and fondly remembered by all who knew him.

“He is forever in our hearts… A true hero.”

The investigation that followed his death was revealed in freedom of information disclosures by the hospital trust.

Responses from the trust released earlier this year said Mr Guest was the only employee to have died from Covid-19.

The Westmorland Gazette | News