Call for investigation into Aboriginal man’s death hours after he was released from hospital

WARNING: Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander readers are advised that this story contains images of a deceased person.

The family of a man who died just hours after being rejected from a regional… New South Wales hospital demands a judicial investigation.
Ricky “Dougie” Hampson Junior, 36, passed away last August. (Delivered)

Kamilaroi/Dunghutti man, Ricky “Dougie” Hampson Junior went to Dubbo Hospital in August 2021 with severe stomach pain, a very elevated heart rate and a “popping and tearing” feeling in his stomach.

His family claims that Hampson was sedated and “was given a cocktail of opioids and painkillers, checked and discharged”.

“He was told by hospital staff to just go home and drink water,” said his father Rick Hampson Senior.

“Within hours, our Dougie was pronounced dead.

“He would have survived if he had been properly examined.”

Hampson died after two perforated ulcers ruptured his stomach lining and intestinal wall. He also tested positive for COVID-19 while in the hospital.

Hampson’s family is calling on NSW Attorney General Mark Speakman to support an inquest into his death to answer questions about the health care response.

“We urgently demand a judicial inquiry into why, despite our son’s severe pain and critical presentation, Dougie was not given appropriate treatment and was discharged from Dubbo Hospital,” said Hampson Senior.

Dougie's father, Ricky Hampson Senior, asks for an inquest.
Dougie’s father, Ricky Hampson Senior, asks for an inquest. (9News)

“I can’t believe that Australia, someone as young as my son, could be denied proper care in a hospital and die of a ruptured stomach ulcer.”

In a statement to 9News, Speakman responded to the family’s calls for a judicial inquiry.

“My thoughts are with Mr Hampson’s family,” Speakman said.

“This case has been referred to the coroner.

“The case remains under Coronial jurisdiction and as such I cannot comment further.”

A year after Hampson’s death, his family mourns the loss of the 36-year-old father and grandfather.

“He was the light of every party. We’re in a world of darkness now that he’s gone, Hampson Senior said.

“No parent should outlive their child.”

Ricky's last photo "dougie" Hampson Junior leaves the hospital before his death.
The last photo of Ricky “Dougie” Hampson Junior leaving the hospital before his death. (9News)

NSW Greens MP Sue Higginson said the investigation will help prevent further deaths like Hampson’s.

“Until the truth is told and we understand and learn what went so tragically wrong, we can’t honestly prevent this from happening again,” she said.

Hampson’s death has been referred to the NSW coroner who told 9News a decision will be made “in due course”.

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