Leeds surgeon suspended as almost '50 patients recalled for review' at Spire Hospital

A Leeds surgeon has been suspended over concerns about patient treatment.

Monday, 17th February 2020, 8:52 am
Updated Monday, 17th February 2020, 8:54 am
A Leeds surgeon has been suspended over concerns about patient treatment.

Mike Walsh had been working at the private Spire Healthcare's Leeds hospital until April 2018, when the company started investigating concerns raised about him.

Almost 50 of his patients have now been recalled for a review of the treatment they received, the company said.

The details have emerged after an inquiry found Ian Paterson, who had worked at the same private healthcare firm, had performed unnecessary operations on patients for years in Birmingham.

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Paterson is now serving a 20-year jail sentence after being found guilty of 17 counts of wounding patients with intent against 10 victims.

In a statement, Spire said it had contacted the Royal College of Surgeons to assist with its investigation into Mr Walsh's case.

The firm said it had reviewed the notes of fewer than 200 patients, of which "fewer than 50" had been invited back for a follow-up appointment.

"Where we have identified concerns about the care a patient received, we have invited the patient to an appointment with an independent surgeon to review their treatment," a spokesman for Spire Healthcare said.

"This is a complex case and the review is ongoing.

"After concerns were raised about Mr Walsh, an investigation was started in April 2018, and he was suspended immediately."

The company said its findings have also been shared with the Care Quality Commission and the General Medical Council (GMC).

Mr Walsh, who is a specialist in trauma and orthopaedic surgery, is no longer working with Spire Healthcare, the company said.

"Spire reiterates its sincere apologies to those patients who have been affected by the treatment they received from Mr Walsh," the Spire Healthcare spokesman added.

The GMC confirmed that while Mr Walsh is still on the medical register he does not currently have a licence to practise, having held full registration until January 2019.

Earlier in February Health Secretary Matt Hancock vowed to introduce improvements in the wake of a damning inquiry into how rogue breast surgeon Paterson was able to go on performing unnecessary operations for years.

Ian Paterson carried out unnecessary operations in NHS and private hospitals, exaggerating or inventing cancer risks and claiming payments for more expensive procedures.

He was employed by Heart of England NHS Foundation Trust but had practising privileges in the independent sector at Spire Parkway and Spire Little Aston in Birmingham.

In September 2017, more than 750 patients treated by Paterson received compensation payouts from a £37m fund.

Spire Healthcare said patients at its Spire Leeds Hospital who have concerns about their care or treatment under Mr Walsh should contact [email protected]