Hospital staff sent Kevin Jordan two reminder letters for mammogram appointments his wife had to attend – more than eight months after she died in their care.
Jacqueline Jordan died aged 55 on September 27 2013 after a six-month battle with breast cancer, but this did not stop administrators at Great Western Hospital issuing urgent reminders for her to attend the site this month.
The emotional scars left with Kevin, 57, after the death of his childhood sweetheart had barely healed when he received the first letter at the end of May.
“It just seems like turning over old ground for me,” he said. “I don’t know, it’s just quite sad really.
“It should never have happened. I could have understood if it had come from Oxford, where she received some care before her death, but to come from the place it actually happened is below the belt.
“You would have thought they would’ve seen the records straight away.”
What made it worse for the grieving husband was the appointment set by GWH in the first letter was for June 11, Kevin’s birthday.
Kevin, who works as a double glazer, received the first letter at the end of May with details of the first appointment, which, though difficult, he accepted as a simple error.
His daughter Charlene then phoned GWH and brought the matter to their attention. She was told, Kevin said, they would be sending out a letter of apology.
“We phoned up and told them she had passed. It doesn’t appear they were listening because I have received another letter,” said Kevin, of Withy Close, Royal Wootton Bassett.
“When my daughter called they said they were going to send out a letter of apology, but instead of that they just sent out another letter of appointment.”
The second letter was received last Friday, dated two days earlier for Tuesday, when Jacqueline’s first scheduled appointment was listed for and after Kevin’s initial complaint.
Suzie Ferrari, Breast Centre manager at GWH, said: “We are deeply sorry for the distress this must have caused.
“This must have been very upsetting for the family and is unacceptable. “This mistake was human error and we will be tightening up our processes to reduce the risk of something like this happening again.”
Kevin met Jacqueline when they were 16 and 15 respectively, and had been together for 40 years when she died.
Kevin was working at the former RA Lister factory in Wroughton when he would walk past Jacqueline’s school each day.
“We would meet at dinner times at the bottom of her school field each day and talk through the fence,” he said.
She discovered her breast cancer at an early stage in March 2012, when her GP referred her to Great Western Hospital for a biopsy, which confirmed the worst.
She received chemotherapy in Oxford and appeared to be making a good recovery but her condition deteriorated in autumn last year.
When she was admitted to GWH in September, Kevin was told she had two weeks to live, but she died the next day.