Retired Detective Inspector died after being given medication that caused ‘massive’ internal bleed, inquest told

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An inquest has heard a retired police detective inspector, who had served in Bridlington, did not die of Covid-19 as a hospital claimed, but of a “massive” internal bleed after being prescribed medication he had previously had an adverse reaction to.

Andy Kirby, 69, died on Christmas Eve 2020 at Hull Royal Infirmary days after initially being diagnosed with a blood clot.

He had been prescribed anticoagulant medication, despite his medical records showing he had previously had an abdominal bleed after taking the drug several years earlier.

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Before his death, concerns had been raised by medical staff that the medication had once again caused internal bleeding and they were stopped, but after another doctor once again prescribed them, Mr Kirby died hours later.

Retired detective inspector Andy Kirby joined Humberside Police in the late 1970s and served in Bridlington.Retired detective inspector Andy Kirby joined Humberside Police in the late 1970s and served in Bridlington.
Retired detective inspector Andy Kirby joined Humberside Police in the late 1970s and served in Bridlington.

A three-day inquest held at Hull Coroners Court in May 2023 was told the hospital at first attributed Mr Kirby’s death to Covid-19, something his family did not accept as he’d had six tests administered during his stays, which had all been recorded as negative.

Solicitor Caroline Murgatroyd of Hudgell Solicitors, an expert in medical negligence cases, who represents Mr Kirby’s family, said only after insisting on further investigations was an autopsy carried out.

The post-mortem revealed he had died of a “massive gastrointestinal bleed” and there was no evidence he had contracted Covid-19.

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Speaking on the day of the Coroner’s verdict on June 14, Ms Murgatroyd said: “But for the family’s determination to find out what happened to Andy, it is likely that his death would have been attributed to Covid and the true facts as to how and why he died would not have come to light.”

Mr Kirby joined Humberside Police in the late 1970s and served in Scunthorpe and Bridlington before finally ending his career as a detective inspector with responsibility for Scientific Support.

During this time, he was called out to numerous sudden deaths and provided the forensic and scientific assistance to ensure that families received answers as to why and how their loved ones had died.

His daughter Andrea and son Jamie Kirby said: “We could not accept the hospital recording his death as from Covid-19 and we were not prepared to do less for him than he had done for others in his professional life.

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“We were compelled to find out precisely why and how he had died and to get the answers we needed in order to finally say our goodbyes.”

At the inquest, HM Assistant Coroner Mr Ian Sprakes recorded a narrative conclusion.

He said: “On the 22nd of December 2020 it was noted that he had developed frank haematuria, haemoptysis, blood in sputum, and was noted to have dried blood around his mouth.

“The anticoagulation medication was stopped in response to this and concern about over anticoagulation.

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“His condition deteriorated on the 22nd of December 2020 he developed hypovolaemic shock, low blood pressure, reduction in haemoglobin levels, and his inflammatory markers remained grossly abnormal.

“On the 23rd of December 2020 his anticoagulation medication was recommenced, and he went on to develop a significant and acute gastrointestinal bleed acutely and proximate to his death and, which in all probability, occurred due to the recommencement of the anticoagulation medication.

"The acute and significant gastro-intestinal bleed was causative of Andrew Kirby’s death.”

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