A DUDLEY family has welcomed the decision to hold a full inquest into the death of their elderly relative more than three years after she passed away at Russells Hall Hospital.

Dorothy Dunn, aged 86, died at Russells Hall Hospital in July 2017 following what her family claimed was a series of unnecessary delays which compromised her care.

A date for a full inquest to be held has now been set for January 2021 by Black Country Coroner Zafar Siddique following a pre-inquest hearing on October 1.

The family are being supported by Midlands law firm FBC Manby Bowdler, which said the inquest would look further into the sequence of events which led to Mrs Dunn’s death on July 17, 2017.

Michael Portman-Hann, chartered legal executive with the firm’s clinical negligence team, said: “Her family have so many questions and concerns about the care she received and this inquest will help provide them with the answers they so desperately want and deserve.”

Mrs Dunn, from Sedgley, died after having been admitted to hospital due to swelling of her tongue.

The inquest opening heard an emergency tracheostomy was performed after Mrs Dunn developed shortness of breath. She later suffered a cardiac arrest and died a week after she was admitted to hospital.

Mr Portman-Hann said the family believed there had been unnecessary delays in treating Mrs Dunn; that the hospital did not have the correct medical equipment in place in the emergency department at the time; that doctors failed to act appropriately and that Mrs Dunn was left without treatment for a prolonged period of time.

He said: “There was no formal investigation at the time of Mrs Dunn’s death and her family were not told about the circumstances until they requested Mrs Dunn’s medical records over 18 months later.

“They subsequently entered into discussions with the hospital trust and approached FBC Manby Bowdler to help investigate what had happened and to write to the coroner on their behalf.

“We believe there are a number of questions surrounding Mrs Dunn’s care and this inquest will provide the family with the proper forum to raise their concerns and for the hospital trust to answer them.”

A spokesman for The Dudley Group NHS Foundation Trust said the trust would not comment on the case until the inquest has taken place.