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article imageHospital being investigated after drill bit left in patient

By Lynn Curwin     Oct 15, 2010 in Health
Providence - Rhode Island Hospital is being investigated by the state’s department of health after a piece of a surgical drill bit was left inside a patient's body following surgery.
The piece of the bit was discovered when diagnostic imaging was done on August 6, two days after the operation. The material was removed and the patient went home later that day.
“As with any unanticipated outcome, we have apologized to the patient and have conducted a full investigation,” the hospital said in a statement. “The physician and operating room staff involved were suspended until the conclusion of the review.
“Following the suspension a team comprised of the chief executive officer, the chief of neurosurgery, the chief medical officer, and the medical and nursing directors of the operating room reviewed the situation and took appropriate disciplinary action on the individuals involved.”
The hospital reported the incident to the Rhode Island Department of Health, which conducted an investigation but has not yet made their findings public.
Hospital officials have not said how many people were involved.
WPRI reported that Rhode Island Hospital was fined $150,000 after a doctor operated on the wrong finger of a patient in 2009. The hospital was ordered to install cameras in the operating rooms and retrain surgery staff after that incident.
It was the fifth time since January 2007 that surgery had been performed on the wrong site at the facility.
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