A total of 12 NHS Trusts have become embroiled in fresh abuse allegations against late BBC presenter Jimmy Savile, raising the number of NHS organisations undertaking investigations to 41.
The new claims emerged after 28 investigation reports into Savile’s activities in NHS premises were published in June, Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt said in a written statement.
Lawyers representing Savile's victims said the new allegations were “incredibly worrying”.
The NHS Savile Legacy Unit, an independent unit which provides oversight of investigations into abuse by the former DJ on NHS premises, passed on information from victims and the Metropolitan Police to the trusts. The nine hospitals and health services had not featured in earlier inquiries.
In light of the claims, prosecutors have asked for outstanding reports to be delayed until later in the year, the Health Secretary said. There will also be a delay to the publication of investigations into alleged abuse by Savile in children's homes and schools, which are overseen by the Department for Education, Mr Hunt added.
The minister said that some of the hospitals may have closed, in which case details of the allegations will be passed on to the legacy organisation.
Tracey Storey, a specialist lawyer who is representing some of Savile's victims, said: “It is incredibly worrying to see more concerns related to Savile emerge and it is vital that authorities work quickly to fully investigate these new allegations.
"The extent of the abuse highlighted by previous and ongoing investigations has been truly horrifying, and the revelation of further allegations raises even more concerns regarding his activities and how he was able to offend over a number of years."
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The radio and TV presenter died aged 84 in October 2011. A year later, allegations that he had sexually abused children were broadcast in the ITV documentary Exposure: The Other Side Of Jimmy Savile which resutled in a joint review by the Metropolitan Police and NSPCC. In turn, this triggered separate NHS investigations.
In reports published in June, Savile was branded an “opportunistic sexual predator” and said Savile used the NHS and his celebrity status to "exploit and abuse" patients and staff.
The documents revealed that the former BBC presenter had committed “truly awful” abuse against patients at hospitals across the country, and boasted about having sex with dead bodies.
In what investigators described as “macabre accounts”, Savile is alleged to have performed sex acts on corpses in the mortuary at Leeds General Infirmary (LGI) and at least one other hospital.
Efa Schimdt, abuse lawyer with Slater and Gordon, which represents 169 of Savile's victims, said: "Very sadly, I am not surprised that the investigations into Jimmy Savile's horrific reign of abuse continues to widen.
"The victims believe redress in the form of a change to the law by introducing mandatory reporting of child abuse within certain regulated activities would stop predators like Savile ever striking again," she suggested.
New investigations have been launched into the following hospitals and health services:
:: Leeds General Infirmary, Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust (subject to previous investigation)
:: Stoke Mandeville Hospital, Buckinghamshire Healthcare NHS Trust (subject to previous investigation)
:: Birch Hill Hospital, Rochdale Pennine Acute NHS Trust
:: Scott House Hospital, Rochdale Calderstones NHS Foundation Trust
:: Bethlem Royal Hospital, south London, and the Maudsley NHS Trust
:: Shenley Hospital, central and north west London NHS Trust
:: West Yorkshire Ambulance Service, Yorkshire Ambulance Service
:: St Martins Hospital, Canterbury, Kent, and Medway NHS and Social Care Partnership Trust
:: Queen Elizabeth Hospital Gateshead, Gateshead Health NHS Foundation Trust
:: Royal Victoria Infirmary, Newcastle upon Tyne NHS Foundation Trust (subject to previous investigation)
:: Meanwood Park Hospital, Leeds and York Partnerships Foundation Trust
:: Calderdale Royal Hospital, Calderdale and Huddersfield NHS Foundation TrustReuse content