Patients wrongly given all-clear

18 November 2009 03:11
Forty-seven patients given x-rays and ultrasounds at an Oban hospital may have wrongly been given the all-clear, according to an official report.The report was ordered after concerns were raised about radiologist Dr James Murray, who was working as a locum at Lorn and Isles hospital. [LNB]A similar review in Ireland, where he also worked, found nine patients had their scans misdiagnosed. [LNB]NHS Highland said anyone with any concerns should contact them. [LNB]Dr Murray worked at Lorn and Isles hospital between October 2007 and May 2008. [LNB]The report by NHS Highland looked into the care of more than 2,000 patients at the hospital, and looked at the work of two radiologists, one of whom was Dr Murray. [LNB]It found that there had been a significant missed diagnosis in 45 x-rays or barium examinations and in two ultrasounds.[LNB] The main aim was to establish whether there were any patient safety concerns Dr Ian BashfordNHS Highland In most of the cases, it found the mistakes did not impact on the care of those involved, however it said the care of four patients was significantly affected. [LNB]A diagnosis of lung cancer was missed in two cases, but the report said this did not significantly impact on the clinical care or the outcome for the patients involved. [LNB]Dr Ian Bashford, NHS Highland board medical director, said: "This review was prompted by concerns among a GP practice regarding the accuracy of a number of x-rays and also because a hospital in Ireland had reviewed x-rays carried out by a radiologist who subsequently worked as a locum radiologist in Oban. [LNB]"The review re-assessed all chest x-rays, barium examinations, all x-rays performed on children aged under 12 years and all ultrasound investigations reported by consultant radiologists at the hospital from 16 October 2007 to 15 May 2008. [LNB]"The main aim was to establish whether there were any patient safety concerns." [LNB]Irish review[LNB]He added: "I would like to reassure patients and members of the public that we take seriously issues such as those that led to this review being carried out in the first place and we have published the report in full to allow everyone an opportunity to look at the findings in more detail. [LNB]"However, if anyone has any more questions or requires additional information then we would ask them to get in touch and we will do our utmost to deal with them." [LNB]Health authorities in the Republic of Ireland launched a review after four patients - whose x-rays and CT scans were allegedly misinterpreted - died of lung cancer. [LNB]The review by the Irish Health Service Executive found the missed diagnoses of X-rays and CT scans caused delays of some months in potential treatments, cures and earlier palliative care. [LNB]For one patient the delay of up to 14 months meant they were denied the chance of surgery that may have given them a 60% chance of survival.

Source: BBC_Sport