Coroner's Court of Western Australia

Inquest into the Death of Hassan Mohamed YOUSSEF

Inquest into the Death of Hassan Mohamed YOUSSEF

Delivered on :6 August 2021

Delivered at : Perth

Finding of : Deputy State Coroner Linton

Recommendations : N/A

Orders/Rules : N/A

Suppression Order : N/A

Summary : Mr Hassan Mohamed Youssef was a sentenced prisoner at the time of his death on 8 November 2018.  He had been receiving medica treatment for various conditions while in custody.  At the time of his death he was housed at Casuarina Prison.

Prior to being sentenced and on admission into custody, it was noted that Mr Youssef had several significant medical conditions including liver cirrhosis with complications of portal hypertension with large oesophageal varices, splenomegaly and thrombocytopenia.  It was apparent this was secondary to chronic hepatitis B.  He also had uncontrolled type 2 diabetes mellitus, hyperlipidaemia, hypertension, ischaemic heart disease with a history of non ST elevation myocardial infarction and coronary artery bypass, heart failure and depression.  Once Mr Youssef was incarcerated he was referred to both the Liver Clinic and a cardiologist for ongoing opinions about his management.  He was also commenced on insulin for his diabetes.  It was noted that Mr Youssef had only taken his medications intermittently while in the community due to financial pressures.

Due to the nature of Mr Youssef’s offences and his medical conditions, he was housed as a protection prisoner at Acacia Prison.  On 25 July 2017 Mr Youssef’s case management officer noted he was a very ill prisoner and did not leave his cell very often.  In July 2018 due to his continuing deterioration in his health, Mr Youssef was moved to the Casuarina Prison Infirmary.  Here he received daily nursing care and reviews from 20 July 2018 to 20 August 2018.

On 21 August 2018 a prison officer answered a cell call from the infirmary cell occupied by Mr Youssef. Blood was observed on Mr Youssef’s face.  A Code Red medical emergency was called over the radio and other prison officers attended.  Mr Youssef’s cell was unlocked and nursing staff immediately went to provide assistance and an ambulance was requested to attend priority one.

Ambulance staff arrived and Mr Youssef was taken by ambulance to Fiona Stanley Hospital.  Mr Youssef’s next of kin were notified by prison staff.  Mr Youssef had indicated his wishes to palliative care staff for all steps to be taken to prolong his life as long as possible.  While at FSH he was given proactive care and underwent further surgical banding procedures.  Mr Youssef returned to the prison infirmary on 27 August 2018.  He underwent further oesophageal varices banding in mid-October 2018 and remained in the prison infirmary for ongoing care.

On 6 November 2018 it was observed that Mr Youssef was observed coughing up blood.  Nursing staff were notified, and immediately attended to take over care of Mr Youssef and an ambulance was requested to attend.  He was taken by ambulance and admitted to FSH, where he underwent surgery to stop the internal bleeding and then he was placed in an induced coma in the intensive care unit.  Mr Youssef was gravely ill with a poor prognosis and it was anticipated by doctors that he would not survive the day.  Mr Youssef died later in the evening in the presence of his son and ex-wife.

The Deputy State Coroner was satisfied that the overall care, treatment and supervision provided to Mr Youssef was equal to, or better than, the treatment and care he would have received for his health conditions if he had remained free in the community.

Catch Words : Death in Custody : Care, Treatment and Supervision : Natural Causes

Last updated: 6-Oct-2021

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