Kaohsiung Municipal Min-Sheng Hospital has been slapped with a fine of half a million New Taiwan dollars after it was found that a surgery had been performed on the wrong patient earlier this month. The medical personnel involved, including the surgeon, had skipped the SOP and failed to confirm the patient’s identity before the operation. It was also later found that the surgeon involved had asked the patient to sign a surgery consent form after the matter. Needless to say, the surgeon in question has been fired.

The patient had been transferred from a care center to Kaohsiung Municipal Min-Sheng Hospital, where he was confused for another patient in his ward. In the operating theater, neither the nurses, the anesthesiologist nor the surgeon confirmed the patient’s identity as required.

Chang Ko
Kaohsiung Municipal Min-Sheng Hospital
Usually, you have to wait until the nurses in the operating room call the ward staff. If the procedures aren’t followed, that could throw the whole process into disarray. The patient affected didn’t have any relatives with him, and didn’t have resources to hire a caregiver. He’s a stroke patient, so he also couldn’t speak.

Kaohsiung Mayor Chen Chi-mai and Premier Chen Chien-jen have condemned the incident.

Chen Chi-mai
Kaohsiung mayor
This was a very basic mistake on the part of Min-Sheng hospital. It’s very unprofessional. It shows that there were oversights on the management front.

Chen Chien-jen
Min-Sheng Hospital performed an operation on the wrong patient. This is unforgivable. It is unimaginable that the standard operating procedures were not followed. We will continue to improve medical staff training. In medical settings every single step of the established standard procedures has to be followed.

It was also found that the surgeon had asked the patient to sign the operation consent form after surgery had already been performed.

Pan Chao-ying
Kaohsiung Department of Health
We found that the surgeon had not only operated on the wrong patient, but also falsified the patient’s medical records. After a review, the surgeon received another major demerit, for a total of two, and was dismissed.

All consultations for the surgeon involved in the incident have been canceled. The city’s health department has issued the hospital a fine of NT$500,000, taken disciplinary action against management and removed the superintendent from his post.

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