Medical Error

Hospital system in need of overhaul

A series of medical incidents at Tuen Mun Hospital has prompted yet another review of our health care system.

Tuesday, 6 December, 2011, 12:00am

Surgical clip left in patient's arm

A surgical clip used to control bleeding was left in the arm of a patient after an operation - one of 21 medical errors reported in the final three months of last year. The Hospital Authority said the 1.5cm clip was found to be missing in an instrument check after the operation. An X-ray showed it was still in the patient's left arm and was surgically removed.

30 Apr 2011 - 12:00am

Long hours mean errors in diagnosis, doctors say

Most public doctors say working long hours affects their job performance and medical judgment while on duty, according to a new survey.

Eight out of 10 doctors surveyed said overwork affected their ability to conduct proper diagnosis, and four out of 10 admitted they had committed medical errors as a result.

18 Apr 2011 - 12:00am

Act now to raise medical standards

With many people leading unhealthy lifestyles, there is a rising demand for medical services in Hong Kong. People expect hospitals to offer top-quality care despite the increasing pressure on medical staff.

The recent series of medical errors in public hospitals is a cause for concern.

4 Apr 2011 - 12:00am

Hospitals seek 'just' system of discipline

The system for disciplining public hospital staff is being reviewed to make it more 'just', the Hospital Authority chief executive said.

The authority was reviewing the system because the existing grounds for punishing staff were too broad and unclear, Shane Solomon said.

29 Jun 2009 - 12:00am

Identifying the identity crisis in modern medicine

Which is the odd one out: a supermarket tin of baked beans, an airport suitcase or a hospital patient? The answer is the tin of beans, which is about 1,000 times less likely to be wrongly identified and mishandled than the suitcase or the patient, for each of which the risk is about 1 in 100.

9 Dec 2008 - 12:00am


Why HK needs a patient safety agency

S. P. Li has correctly called for more transparency regarding the incidence of medical mishaps in Hong Kong ('Real number of 'error' deaths unreported', February 5).

12 Feb 2008 - 12:00am

Medical errors are 'inevitable'

Medical mistakes were inevitable because of the complexity of advanced medications and treatments, the Hospital Authority's director of quality and safety, Leung Pak-yin, said yesterday.

He was speaking a day after a report highlighted loopholes in procedures at Prince of Wales Hospital that contributed to a fatal blunder.

26 Aug 2007 - 12:00am

Relieve doctors of the role of pharmacist

We all make honest mistakes and doctors, for all the training and care that they take, are no different. To err is human, after all. But honest mistakes rarely wash when it comes to our foremost priority in life, our health. The most stringent possible system has to therefore be put in place to reduce medical errors and ensure patient safety.

23 Apr 2007 - 12:00am

On a knife's edge

It's 3.30am on a Tuesday when Dr Lee's pager beeps him awake. Without washing his face or changing his clothes, the neurosurgeon rushes through the dimly lit corridors linking his office to the Queen Elizabeth Hospital's emergency department. Minutes later, Dr Lee (not his real name) is assessing a 53-year-old taxi driver found unconscious in his car.

13 Feb 2007 - 12:00am

Arrogant doctors are guilty of collective misconduct

The article headlined, 'Off by a heartbeat', on medical misdiagnosis (South China Morning Post, October 14), reported that the Medical Council is now 'trying to educate the public' by issuing a booklet which includes the statement that 'Medicine is not an exact science . . . '.

6 Nov 2000 - 12:00am

Mum tells of 'treasure I almost lost forever'

A boy who would have been aborted because of a doctor's misdiagnosis played happily yesterday as the Medical Council heard how his mother had been told he was dead in her womb.

'I will tell him the story when he gets older. He is my treasure and I almost lost him forever,' Mrs Leung said. She said his name carried the Chinese character ching meaning 'healthy and normal'.

28 Sep 2000 - 12:00am

Medical complaint caseload shoots up

Complaints against doctors leaped by almost 30 per cent last year as patients were more willing to speak up, the Medical Council said yesterday.

One doctor was deregistered for 12 months, four doctors for three to six months and one was reprimanded.

The council received 245 complaints against doctors in 1998, a 28.9 per cent increase from the previous year's 190.

29 Jan 1999 - 12:00am

Murphy's Law and medical errors

Are you familiar with Murphy's Law?' asks Dr Poon Tak-lun, strolling out of Queen Mary Hospital after another day on the orthopaedics ward.

It's an odd way to explain the seemingly endless string of serious mistakes which have dogged Hong Kong hospitals, and Mr Murphy has yet to feature in any Hospital Authority press release.

21 Aug 1998 - 12:00am

Pay misdiagnosis

It must be more than a coincidence that every time there is any sort of hospital staff crisis, it is junior doctors who bear the brunt. Before the authorities seriously consider making a cut in allowances paid to medical officers, they ought to give careful consideration to the consequences.

6 Feb 1998 - 12:00am