Tesco store in baby overdose storm

ANGRY -- Craig Trussell with baby Edward and partner Donna Kennady
ANGRY -- Craig Trussell with baby Edward and partner Donna Kennady

AN OUTRAGED family say their newborn son was put at risk of a potentially disastrous overdose after a medication mix-up involving the Tesco superstore in Hucknall.

Craig Trussell (27) visited the pharmacy at the store to collect a prescription of liquid paracetamol for his son, Edward, who was just six weeks old at the time.

But instead of the correct spoon to give the maximum dose of 2.5 millilitres, the medicine was handed over with a five-millilitre spoon.

Mr Trussell, who suffers from autism and is dyslexic, almost gave his baby the wrong dose before his partner, Donna Kennady, spotted the mistake and intervened in the nick of time.

A complaint was made direct to Tesco, with Mr Trussell claiming that either the correct spoon or an oral syringe should have been provided by the pharmacist.

But he says he was “fobbed off”. Now he has also been banned from the popular store.

“We were furious,” said Mr Trussell, who previously worked at the Hucknall superstore on Ashgate Road, off Station Road.

“Edward has medical problems and struggles to breathe. He has also suffered an overdose in hospital before and we were extremely angry that he was put at risk again.

“I spoke to the store manager, who asked if I was having a joke. He said he trusted his pharmacy staff to do their job. But in this case, they failed.

“I don’t know what the impact of an overdose would have had on Edward. It doesn’t bear thinking about. I cannot believe this has happened. It is a disgrace.”

The mix-up happened on Thursday December 23 last year. After Mr Trussell was dissatisfied with the response from the store, he turned to Tesco’s regional pharmacy manager, Vinni Sethi.

An investigation was launched and Mr Trussell has now received a written apology. It states that the medication was correctly dispensed, labelled and checked.

But the wrong spoon was handed out and “in hindsight”, an alternative should have been offered.

The letter states: “The matter has been taken extremely seriously and both the staff involved and the pharmacy procedures will be monitored on an ongoing basis.”

All pharmacy staff at the Hucknall store have also been retrained to ensure medication is supplied with the correct equipment.

A Tesco spokesman added: “This medication was clearly labelled with the correct dosage instructions. We are ensuring that our pharmacy follows correct procedure when issuing spoons for dispensing.”

In a twist to the tale, Mr Trussell, of Devonshire Street, New Houghton, Mansfield, has since been banned from every Tesco superstore in the country for 12 months.

He says he cannot understand why he has been hit by the punishment.

A letter sent to him states the ban is due to “several incidents” Mr Trussell is alleged to have been involved in at the Hucknall superstore.

The letter adds: “Should you choose to ignore this (the ban) and enter our premises, you will be treated as a trespasser and be liable to any civil or criminal consequences that may be appropriate.”

The Tesco spokesman added that the ban is unrelated to the controversy surrounding the pharmacy.

He declined to comment officially on the allegations levelled at Mr Trussell.