14 Oct 2013

Scope of Savile NHS patients abuse probe widened

A number of hospitals may be investigated as part of inquiries into sexual abuse by Jimmy Savile at NHS premises, the health secretary has confirmed.

An investigation into abuse at Broadmoor, Stoke Mandeville and Leeds General hospitals, along with 10 trusts, will be expanded to include “other hospitals”.

Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt announced that new information has come to light relating to investigations across other institutions.

Mr Hunt has asked police to review all evidence before relevant information is passed on to investigators “as quickly as possible”.

“It is vital that the final NHS investigation report is thorough and complete and reflects all the evidence about Jimmy Savile‘s pattern of offending,” Mr Hunt said.

After Savile died in 2011 aged 84, it emerged he may have abused hundreds of children.

He had his own bedroom at Stoke Mandeville hospital, an office and living quarters at Broadmoor as well as widespread access to Leeds General Infirmary.

The Operation Yewtree police investigation was launched to look into claims about abuse possibly linked to him and separate allegations about a number of high-profile figures.

Liz Dux, head of abuse at Slater and Gordon Lawyers, who represents 72 potential Savile victims, said victims are encouraged by news that the NHS inquiries will be comprehensive.

“My clients all need closure and whilst we welcome a detailed understanding of how Savile was able to operate unchecked for so many years, at the same time we need to recognise that until these reports are concluded their suffering continues.”