FORMER patients of disgraced Bundaberg Hospital surgeon Jayant Patel have once again resigned themselves to another long wait while legal battles take place.
The shamed surgeon, who was convicted of three counts of manslaughter in July 2010, was yesterday granted special leave to appeal his conviction in the High Court.
Patel was sentenced to seven years jail in July 2010 after a Brisbane Supreme Court jury found him guilty of manslaughter relating to the deaths of Gerry Kemps, 77, James Phillips, 46, and Mervyn Morris, 75, and guilty of causing grievous bodily harm to Ian Vowles, 62.
The charges related to his time as head of surgery at Bundaberg Hospital between March 2003 and April 2005.
Mr Vowles' wife, Dorothy, said she had resigned herself to waiting for the expected two-day legal battle to return to the courts.
"It's just the waiting - it would be better if it was completely over," she said.
She said she and her husband were trying to move on, but the continual court cases brought back memories.
Gerry Kemps' widow, Judy, said she was also trying to put the past behind her.
"I hope it does not go to a full trial again," she said.
"We will just have to wait and see what this ends up with."
Former patient Marily Gregory, who is almost bedridden after Patel botched her gall bladder surgery, was upset the appeal had been granted.
"I feel sick that this has gone through," she said.
"The patients got paid a mere pittance and how much is this costing?"
Patel took his case to the Court of Appeal in Brisbane early last year, where he sought to have his conviction overturned.
The appeal was dismissed, as was a cross-appeal by Queensland's attorney-general to have his sentence increased.
It is not clear when the appeal will be heard before the High Court.