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Patient's healthy kidney removed by mistake

When we go in for a surgery or medical procedure, we go with the reasonable assumption that the hospital and staff follow proper safety measures. We understand that things happen that can't be foreseen but when an error occurs that could have been prevented it can be tough to swallow.

That's probably how one patient felt recently when he woke from his procedure to discover that staff had removed a perfectly healthy kidney. The mix up happened because the patient was not properly identified. The hospital found itself in hot water after the incident and were on the verge of losing its Medicare and Medicaid agreement when an unannounced visit from the federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and the Division of Health Care Facility Licensure. 

The two governing bodies found that the facility "was not in substantial compliance" when it came to quality assessment, a medical record service, patient's rights and surgical services. The two regulatory agencies told the facility to come up with a comprehensive plan for improving these areas or face the consequences. Since then, the hospital has taken corrective measures and is back in compliance with federal and state regulations.

A story like this one isn't as rare as you might think. Hospitals and medical professionals make preventable mistakes all the time that leave patients with serious injuries. If this has happened to you and you believe there was negligence involved, an attorney may be able to help you get compensation for medical bills and pain and suffering.

Source: telegram.com, "St. Vincent Hospital files corrective plan after patient ID error," Susan Spencer, December 12, 2016

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