Son of Blackpool Victoria Hospital patient speaks out after stroke unit nurses jailed

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The son of an elderly stroke patient at Blackpool Victoria Hospital has spoken out after two nurses were jailed for administering potentially life-threatening sedatives to his mum and other patients - so they could enjoy an “easy life” on their shifts.

Brian Scott described the actions of nurses Catherine Hudson, 54 and Charlotte Wilmot, 48 as 'pure evil'.

The pair were jailed at Preston Crown Court today (Thursday, December 14) after being convicted of unlawfully drugging patients at Blackpool Victoria Hospital and bragging about it to other members of staff in a series of 'wicked' WhatsApp messages.

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They described patients and their families in the most derogatory and cruellest terms.

In one message, Wilmot said a patient needed sedating ‘to high heaven’ with Hudson boasting to others about sedating another patient to ‘within an inch of her life’.

Hudson even messaged her daughter to tell her that she would sedate one ‘nightmare’ patient as soon as she did her nightly drugs round, laughing about how he ‘sleeps like a baby’ when drugged.

They were caught after a student nurse who had been working with Hudson saw her give non-prescribed Zopiclone - a powerful sedative - to elderly stroke patient Aileen Scott (pictured).

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Ailee Scott was one of nurse Catherine Hudson's victims while receiving care at Blackpool Victoria Hospital's stroke unitAilee Scott was one of nurse Catherine Hudson's victims while receiving care at Blackpool Victoria Hospital's stroke unit
Ailee Scott was one of nurse Catherine Hudson's victims while receiving care at Blackpool Victoria Hospital's stroke unit | Lancashire Police

When the student nurse questioned Hudson, she was told: "Well, she’s got a DNAR (do not attempt resuscitation) in place so she wouldn’t be opened up if she died or if it came to any harm."

The student nurse reported her concerns to police who found Hudson, who had worked on the stroke unit at Blackpool Victoria Hospital as a senior nurse for a number of years, had needlessly sedated patients between 2017 and 2018 with Wilmot, an assistant practitioner, encouraging her to do so.

Both healthworkers committed the acts "for their own amusement, out of spite for the patients and to have an easy shift", said Lancashire Police detectives.

The police investigation also found hospital staff had unrestricted access to prescription-only drugs on the stroke unit and some would help themselves and self-medicate or steal drugs to supply to others.

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Drugs such as Zopiclone were stolen and used to sedate patients to "keep them quiet" during night shifts, putting their patients' lives at risk.

One of Hudson's victims was Aileen Scott, from Glasgow, who was on holiday in Blackpool when she suffered a stroke and was admitted to the hospital's stroke unit.

Hudson was sentenced to seven years and two months in prison and Wilmot sentenced to three years in prison.

Ms Scott's son, Brian, has spoken out about his mother's ordeal and how the experience had left her 'terrified' of hospitals and healthworkers.

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After learning of the callous WhatsApp messages shared between the two nurses and other members of staff, Mr Scott described their actions as 'evil' and 'deepy disturbing'.

You can watch our full interview with Mr Scott in our video player.

"How did this even happen? This is a hospital", said Brian, who described his horror when hearing transcripts of the nurses' WhatsApp messages read out at Preston Crown Court during their trial in October.

(left) Catherine Hudson, 54, of Coriander Close, Blackpool and Charlotte Wilmot, 48, of Bowland Crescent, Blackpool (right) were sentenced to a combined total of 10 years in prison at Preston Crown Court after being found guilty of multiple offences after trial in October.(left) Catherine Hudson, 54, of Coriander Close, Blackpool and Charlotte Wilmot, 48, of Bowland Crescent, Blackpool (right) were sentenced to a combined total of 10 years in prison at Preston Crown Court after being found guilty of multiple offences after trial in October.
(left) Catherine Hudson, 54, of Coriander Close, Blackpool and Charlotte Wilmot, 48, of Bowland Crescent, Blackpool (right) were sentenced to a combined total of 10 years in prison at Preston Crown Court after being found guilty of multiple offences after trial in October. | Lancashire Police

"Wicked and pure evil"

Mr Scott said: "Nothing prepares you to hear something like that. It was horrifying, shocking and deepy disturbing.

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"How could someone actually say those things? Especially a nurse?"

"The outcome (of the unlawful sedation) could have been that it caused her to die. And I would have been none the wiser because she had a DNR (Do not resuscitate order).

"Nothing would have prepared me for what I heard at that trial. Especially around some of those messages and the way they were speaking about patients.

"It was absolutely horrendous. What I found really disturbing was that they tried to portray it as 'banter', it was just a joke, their sense of humour. That's not humour.

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"They are nurses. They are there to help and look after and care for patients, not behave the way they did. It's very traumatic actually."

You can read our full report from today's sentencing at Preston Crown Court here.