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The Dudley Group Foundation Trust

X-ray mistakes investigated at Midlands hospital

PERFORMANCE: A baby and an adult patient were wrongly subjected to an x-ray by hospital staff it has emerged after a whistleblower came forward.

A separate female patient also had the wrong part of her body scanned in an MRI machine.

The Dudley Group Foundation Trust confirmed to HSJ all three incidents had happened at its Russells Hall Hospital in Dudley, West Midlands in July as a result of what the trust said was human error.

The mistakes emerged after an anonymous whistleblower spoke to a local newspaper claiming the radiology department was short-staffed and workers were under pressure due to a new rota that was “unworkable” because of the shortages.

The staff member claimed the wrong baby was x-rayed because the child’s name was not checked.

An investigation into the claims has been launched by hospital bosses.

Paula Clark, chief executive of the Dudley Group Foundation Trust, said: “Regrettably these errors have occurred at Russells Hall Hospital as a result of human error, despite rigorous preventative processes in place.

“We take such incidents very seriously and, as you would expect, investigations are underway.  We can confirm that these errors were correctly reported by staff which is important to ensure a culture of openness and learning.”

She added the hospital’s radiology department had five radiographer vacancies although she added: “just one is a due to gap in staffing; the remainder are due to a review of working practices to improve our services.”

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