NHS pays £17 million in compensation to rogue breast surgeon's victims

Ian Paterson, a breast surgeon and former Bangor Grammer pupil performed hundreds of needless operations on women and will serve 20 years in jail for his crimes
Seanin Graham

MORE than £17 million in NHS compensation has been paid to victims of rogue surgeon and former Bangor Grammar pupil Ian Paterson.

A total of 277 claims have been made by women left scarred and disfigured by Scottish-born Paterson (59) after he performed unnecessary breast operations while working in English hospitals.

Last week the surgeon had five years added to his original 15-year jail sentence handed down in May after a judge deemed it 'unduly lenient'.

The multi-million pound compensation settlements, first reported in the Health Service Journal, may increase as private patients have launched a legal bid against the Heart of England NHS Foundation Trust, private health provider Spire Healthcare and Paterson.

Spire said the Trust has to "explain its delay in informing the private sector of its concerns, allowing Ian Paterson to go on treating (and harming) private patients".

Paterson, from Altrincham, Greater Manchester, was convicted by a jury at Nottingham Crown Court of 17 counts of wounding with intent and three counts of unlawful wounding against 10 private patients.

One victim was described as looking like a 'car crash victim' after an unnecessary mastectomy.

The case against the English NHS trust, private healthcare firm and Paterson will reach the High Court later this year.

A Spire spokesman said: "The case is unprecedented in size and in terms of the novel issues raised against the NHS and against the private healthcare sector.

Former classmates of Paterson described him as being "quiet" after he moved to the Co Down town with his family in the 1960s.

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