Ian Paterson was a consultant breast surgeon in the West Midlands, working in both NHS and private practice at Heartlands Hospital, Solihull Hospital, Good Hope Hospital, Spire Hospital Parkway and Spire Hospital Little Aston.
From 1993 until he was suspended in 2011, Mr Paterson treated thousands of patients in both the NHS and private sector, carrying out needless breast surgeries and using unapproved techniques for breast cancer.
More than 1,000 NHS and private healthcare patients were affected over a 14-year period, an inquiry found.
Mr Paterson was jailed in 2017 and is now serving a 20-year prison sentence for wounding with intent.
Birmingham and Solihull Senior Coroner Louise Hunt opened and adjourned the inquests on Friday 29 October. The coroner pledged her hearings would consider whether Paterson's colleagues had been lacking in scrutiny of him.
The new inquests follow a previous seven that were opened in July 2020, making the total number 20, and this number may rise as more deaths are considered by the multi-disciplinary team put together by the coroner.
One of the 13 inquests opened on Friday was into the death of Eunice Jones - known as Pam - who died of breast cancer at Solihull Hospital in 2004. She had been operated on by Ian Paterson just two years earlier.
Mrs Jones’ son, Matthew Jones, is represented by Shoosmiths medical negligence expert Kashmir Uppal who has been pursuing claims on behalf of former patients since 2010
Kashmir said: “From the indications given by the coroner, the scope and remit of these inquests will extend far beyond the actions of Mr Paterson and will also consider the cultural failings, which led to the vacuum in which Mr Paterson was allowed to carry out the unregulated cleavage sparing mastectomy procedure.
“This left behind toxic breast tissue but unbeknown to most of his patients as it was hidden underneath a neat reconstruction. The fact that the coroner indicated that the inquest is likely to be an Article 2 Inquest indicates that there is a concern about the wider circumstances surrounding the deaths, which means that an enhanced investigation is required, particularly on whether the deaths were caused by any institutional or systemic failures, rather than individual acts of negligence or neglect.
BBC Midlands Today
28/10/22 - Ian Paterson/Eunice Jones Inquest
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