THE key events surrounding the scandal at Stafford Hospital.
2004 – Stafford Hospital goes from three-star rating to no stars.
2007 – Julie Bailey launches Cure the NHS after revealing exclusively to the Newsletter the poor care her mother Bella had received at Stafford Hospital.
February 2008 – Stafford Hospital gains foundation trust status.
March 2009 – Healthcare Commission report reveals hundreds of possible unnecessary deaths. Chief executive Martin Yeates had stepped down a few weeks before the report was published.
2009 – An independent inquiry into failings at the hospital is launched, chaired by Robert Francis QC.
February 2010 – Francis report finds “shocking” failings.
June 2010 - New health secretary Andrew Lansley announced a public inquiry on the role of regulatory bodies to be chaired by Robert Francis QC who had conducted the earlier investigation into why up to 1,200 people may have died unnecessarily between 2005 and 2008.
November 2010 – The inquiry begins.
December 2011 - Stafford Hospital’s accident and emergency department closes overnight, initially for three months although it has since been revealed it will not reopen as a walk-in unit. More than 20,000 people signed a petition calling for it to be re-opened.