Pensioner, 89, died after fall

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AN 89-year-old woman who fell down the stairs would have survived if she had been younger, an inquest heard.

Retired teacher Pamela Craig, who suffered with painful arthritis, fell down four stairs at her home in Kingsdale Road, Berkhamsted, on the evening of August 31 this year.

She was discovered by her daughter Fiona at around 10.30pm. She had suffered a laceration to her head but was still conscious.

She was taken to Watford General Hospital by ambulance and on the way there her condition began to worsen.

Speaking to Ms Craig’s other daughter Caroline during the inquest hearing, coroner Edward Thomas said: “Both your sister and doctor felt your mother really didn’t have the physical capacity to recover from this awful shock. She was placed on the Liverpool Care Pathway and then died on September 1.”

The Liverpool Care Pathway is a form of treatment designed to give dying patients the best quality and dignity possible in their final days and hours.

Mr Thomas said: “She had had a traumatic fall, which had been a terrible shock to her system. If she had been much younger she would have recovered from that.”

Verdict: accidental death.