A teaching trust is re-examining around 5,000 X-rays – some dating back more than a decade – after fears they may have been overlooked and patients could have been put at risk.

The investigation at East Kent Hospitals University Foundation Trust was launched after it was discovered information on the trust’s picture archiving and communication system did not match with the radiology information system – leading to concern the X-rays may not have been reviewed at the time they were taken.

Julie Barton, interim divisional director for clinical services support, said: “The team at East Kent Hospitals process almost 700,000 examinations a year. We use two record systems: one to store the image and one that holds patient information.

“When routinely monitoring our systems, 5,000 records show that patient information is included with the image, rather than being recorded on two separate systems.

“We are now checking and updating these records to make sure information is recorded consistently across our systems.”

The trust said no patients had been recalled and so far no missed diagnoses or patient harm had been identified during the reviews.

The issue was discovered during a routine check when inconsistencies in how the images were stored were spotted. Many of the images date back to 2007 when the IT systems were introduced.