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Wrong Kidney from Wrong patient taken out at a US Massachusetts Hospital

Worcester : An investigation has found that a surgeon at a Massachusetts hospital removed a kidney from the wrong patient after failing to confirm the patient’s identity.

State and federal health investigators say the surgeon in July was supposed to remove a kidney with a tumor from a patient at St. Vincent Hospital in Worcester, but instead removed a healthy kidney from a different patient with the same name.

Authorities say the hospital failed to follow proper patient identification protocols by checking birth dates. The patients were several years apart in age.

St. Vincent has been put on notice that its Medicare and Medicaid agreements with the government will be terminated unless it takes corrective action.

The hospital in a statement said it is taking “all necessary steps” to prevent a similar error.

Source: AP
11 comment(s) on Wrong Kidney from Wrong patient taken out at a US Massachusetts Hospital

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  1. Protocols of marking the site and the side of operation with skin marker is followed in many teaching Institutes in India. That\’s the best way to avoid event the accidental wrong procedure .

  2. user
    Dr Swetal D Bhavsar October 17, 2016, 4:40 pm

    Don\’t they interact patient in OR about the Surgery from OR registration till just before inducing anesthesia. It\’s shame indeed. A simple conversation with patient would have saved his kidney.

  3. Surgical Safety Checklist

  4. Errors are inevitable part of having a human brain. It is punishment myth that we punish people for committing errors. We canot make human error proof but can certainly identfy cercumstances that lead to such errors. Identify those factors and correct them. Punishing individuals in this case will not prevent this from happening next time. Do root cause analysis and plug the various holes in the system that lead to this error

  5. This is an unforgivable crime, for the nurses concerned and the doctors including the anesthesiologist.
    I have been irritated so many times in CA by personnel asking repeatedly my name and age even for a blood test.
    I guess the rules are different in MA and NY where a Neurosurgeon a few years ago opened the wrong side of skull in a brain tumor case.