Investigation into Savile hospital abuse ‘on track’

Jimmy Savile on a visit to Pinderfields Hospital
Jimmy Savile on a visit to Pinderfields Hospital

An investigation into the abuse of a patient at Dewsbury and District Hospital by disgraced broadcaster Jimmy Savile is ‘on track’, the health secretary has said.

We revealed in May that a woman had come forward to police after Savile died in October 2011. She was abused by the DJ at the hospital when she was 15 years old 40 years ago.

The incident was one of 28 cases being investigated by West Yorkshire Police where the abuse took place in hospitals.

Back in May when the allegations first surfaces, a police spokesperson said the force was “well aware” that an independent investigation into Savile’s associations with hospitals was underway.

The Secretary of State for Health, Jeremy Hunt said the independent investigation, has three main strands - Broadmoor, Stoke Mandeville and Leeds General Infirmary - but investigations are taking place at a further ten trusts, including that which runs Dewsbury.

The investigation is working with the Metropolitan Police and Department of Health to review any information relevant to the case.

Mr Hunt said: “This review is still on-going. We understand the material includes information about hospitals where investigations are already underway, and reference to other hospitals. Once this review is complete, the information will be passed on to the relevant trusts or investigations as quickly as possible.

“Although all 13 investigations are currently on track, this additional material means that the timetable will be affected. It is vital that the final NHS investigation reports are thorough and complete, and reflect all the evidence about Jimmy Savile’s pattern of offending.

“The final reports of all the investigations will now aim to be completed by June 2014, with publication sooner if that is possible.”

Mid Yorkshire Hospitals NHS Trust, which runs Dewsbury and District Hospital, was made aware of the allegation by officers from Operation Yew Tree - Scotland Yard’s investigation into the presenters past.

A spokesperson for the Trust said: “This is one of a number of alleged incidents across NHS organisations which were not reported at the time that have come to light as a result of the publicity surrounding this case. This allegation relates to events more than 40 years ago and the protection of vulnerable children and adults has advanced beyond recognition since then.

“We are confident the arrangements we have in place today for safeguarding children in our care are comprehensive and robust. In the light of the specific issues that emerged from the Operation Yew Tree, we have reviewed relevant policies and procedures to ensure that we have considered all possible risks.

“We continue to work with the team leading the NHS-wide investigation with a view to a full report being published once it has concluded.”

Dewsbury and District Hospital is one of 13 under investigation in the UK following revelations about decades of abuse carried out by the former Radio 1 DJ:

Leeds General Infirmary (including St James’s Hospital)

Stoke Mandeville Hospital

Broadmoor Hospital

High Royds Psychiatric Hospital

Dewsbury and District Hospital

Great Ormond Street Hospital

Moss Side Hospital

Exeter Hospital

Portsmouth Hospital

St Catherine’s Hospital

Cardiff Royal Infirmary

Rampton Hospital

Saxondale Hospital