Victim of disgraced surgeon agrees to meet Humza Yousaf after heckling

Theresa Mallett was booed for her interruption before the First Minister left the podium to speak with her.

A victim of a disgraced surgeon who interrupted the First Minister’s speech at the SNP’s independence convention said she will take up his offer of a meeting.

Theresa Mallett called for a public inquiry into NHS Tayside’s former head of neurosurgery Professor Sam Eljamel as she heckled Humza Yousaf at the Caird Hall on Saturday.

The 61-year-old from Glenrothes is one of more than 100 victims of the disgraced surgeon.

She was initially booed for her interruption by SNP delegates before Yousaf left the podium to speak with her.

Ms Mallett then chose to leave the hall and has since left the SNP saying only a full public inquiry will restore her faith in the party.

“He said a public inquiry is not off the table and my reply was, ‘but it’s not in the courts’,” she told STV News.

“A public inquiry will mean we’ll get all the people responsible in court under oath and then we might get some answers. I need to make sure our hospitals are safe and make sure this can never happen again.”

The SNP confirmed the First Minister offered to meet Ms Mallett, which she said she is happy to do.

A public inquiry was refused by Humza Yousaf when he was health secretary.

NHS Tayside has pledged to work with the Scottish Government on “the next steps to support individual patients”.

Representing a group of 111 other patients that have come forward, Ms Mallett has been left struggling to walk and suffering chronic pain after Eljamel operated on her back more than ten years ago.

“When I went in for my operation they knew,” she said, “I would never have had that operation. I wouldn’t have gone near that man.

“I don’t know what he has done to me. He told me the operation was a complete success.

“It wasn’t. He refused to provide me with an x-ray. And two years later I was told at a pain clinic it was permanent.

“I can’t do anything. I’ve never got back to work. I can never go to the Himalaya as I wanted.

“But it did not destroy me because he never took my voice. I have got my mind back clear.

“But the me who lives with pain, my goodness, it’s really dreadful.”

Professor Eljamel removed himself from the General Medical Council (GMC) in 2013, but the remit does not extend beyond the UK and he is currently working as a surgeon in Libya.

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