Ian Paterson inquiry

24th January 2020

Issued on behalf of H M Coroner of Birmingham and Solihull

Higgs & Sons has been appointed to assist H M Coroner of Birmingham and Solihull in its preliminary investigations into the Ian Paterson matter.

West Midlands Police have asked the Birmingham and Solihull Coroner to review a number of cases where patients have died from breast cancer and who were previously treated by Mr Paterson.

Mr Paterson was convicted of the assault of a number of his patients as he was found to have been undertaking breast operations that did not confirm to approved standards.

The Senior Coroner Mrs Louise Hunt and the Area Coroner Ms Emma Brown are jointly carrying out a preliminary investigation into the cases under s 1(7) of the Coroners and Justice Act 2009. The preliminary investigation is to identify whether there is any evidence that gives reason to suspect that any of the former patients of Mr Paterson have died an unnatural death as a result of his potentially substandard treatment.

These preliminary investigations will take some time due to the volume of patients and complexity of the cases. As a starting point the Birmingham and Solihull coroners have selected 23 cases at random to investigate in more detail to try to understand whether the required legal threshold will be met. With assistance from West Midlands Police, we have tried to locate and notify the families of the women selected for the 23 test cases and our enquiries in this regard are ongoing.

We understand that this will cause anxiety for a lot of families and we would ask at this stage that families do not contact us.

We have set up a website which contains some useful information about what is happening and would ask that you refer to that website.

Higgs & Sons has been appointed to assist us in our preliminary investigations. If you need any further information you should contact them at: or on 01384 327113.

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