Woman who needed two liver transplants after medical blunder dies in Hong Kong hospital

Tang Kwai-sze, a Hepatitis B sufferer, had been battling infection in the intensive care unit of Queen Mary Hospital

PUBLISHED : Saturday, 26 August, 2017, 12:25pm
UPDATED : Saturday, 26 August, 2017, 11:44pm

A 43-year-old mother who underwent two separate liver transplants in April following a medical blunder, died on Saturday morning, the Post has learnt.

A source with knowledge of the matter said Tang Kwai-sze, a Hepatitis B sufferer, had been battling infection in the intensive care unit of Queen Mary Hospital in Pok Fu Lam.

A Queen Mary Hospital spokeswoman confirmed Tang died on Saturday early morning from shock triggered by infections.

Doctors deny condition critical at Hong Kong’s public hospitals despite complaints and creaking system

The spokeswoman said the case has passed on to the Coroner’s Court for follow up.

She added that the hospital will provide help for the family.

Tang leaves behind her 17-year-old daughter who had wanted to donate part of her own liver to help save her mother but was three months shy of the legal age.

Chief Executive Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor said she was saddened by the death of Tang and expressed deep condolences to her family members, especially her daughter, whom she had admired.

“She has demonstrated her fortitude and calmness when her mother was ill, and has left me a strong impression,” said Lam.

Lam said she has asked the Food and Health Bureau to explore ways in beefing up medical procedures at public hospitals as the death of Tang should not be regarded as just one single incident.

She added the government had conducted a public consultation on the minimum legal age of organ-donors and would announce the results later.

Tang had been fighting for her life in hospital since she suffered an acute liver failure in January this year.

The failure came after two doctors at United Christian Hospital in Kwun Tong prescribed her a high dose of steroids for a kidney complaint without giving her an anti-virus drug to prevent her from suffering potentially fatal side effects.

She was later transferred to Queen Mary Hospital in Pok Fu Lam, where she had two separate liver transplants on April 13 and 20. She had been in intensive care unit since.

An investigative panel in July said a lack of vigilance by two specialists and a heavy workload was to blame for the blunder. But the panel declined to reveal whether any staff had been penalised.

As of July, the pair were still working at United Christian Hospital in Kwun Tong.