Grieving daughters say their hospice carer mother who died from cancer after struggling to arrange an in-person GP appointment was ‘failed by the system’
- Gill Dutton, 65, asked for her GP’s advice after she developed a persistent cough
- But the carer was only offered brief telephone consultations where concerns were dismissed
- Six months later, scans revealed that she had developed stage four lung cancer
- She was given three years to live but died after picking up chest infection in July
- Her daughters say the grandmother-of-three was ‘failed by the system’
A hospice carer who died from cancer after struggling to arrange a face-to-face GP appointment was ‘failed by the system’, say her grieving daughters.
Gill Dutton, 65, devoted ten years of her life providing end-of-life care to cancer patients at St Giles Hospice in Tamworth, Staffordshire.
But when she developed a persistent cough at the start of the pandemic, the grandmother of three was only offered brief telephone consultations.
Her GP dismissed her cough in her first appointment in April last year, saying that it was probably caused by having had Covid and that it would pass on its own.
Gill Dutton, 65, who died from cancer after struggling to arrange a face-to-face GP appointment was ‘failed by the system’, say her grieving daughters. Pictured: Gill with her daughter Lisa
Six months later, a severely delayed CT scan revealed that she had developed stage four lung cancer and doctors gave her just three years to live.
Although she responded well to her first two rounds of chemotherapy, she picked up a chest infection in July.
The former caregiver died at home in Tamworth last month, leaving behind her husband, two daughters and a son.
Both of Mrs Dutton’s grief-stricken daughters are today backing the Daily Mail’s campaign, saying they hope to prevent future heartbreak for others.
Her eldest daughter Liz Parker, 35, said: ‘Nothing we can do will bring Mum back but if this campaign helps stop another person going through the same thing, it’s worth it.
‘Mum would do anything for anybody. She really did devote her life to looking after others. So it makes it more painful that she was not looked after as she should have been.’
Mrs Dutton’s youngest daughter, Lisa McBlane, 33, also believes her mother might have survived if she had been treated sooner.
The NHS midwife asked: ‘Why weren’t the signs spotted earlier? I can only think that their [the doctors’] judgment was clouded by the pandemic.’
Both daughters are now planning to write to their GP to demand answers surrounding their mother’s care.
Mrs Parker added: ‘It is fair to say that the system failed her. Had my mum been seen earlier, she might still be here.’
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