Saturday, July 17, 2010

Dubai doctor sacked for causing child's death

The Gulf Today, 16 July 2010 

The Dubai Health Authority (DHA) has removed a female Arab doctor working at the government-run Al Wasl hospital.
The action was taken against the doctor known as SSM, after she had been proved to responsible for causing the death of an 11-year-old UAE national girl MAA.
Qadi Saeed Al Murooshid, Director General of the DHA, said that the deceased girl was admitted to Al Wasl hospital in last August, as she was suffering from vomiting and fever. The girl was already suffering from rheumatoid arthritis.
“The doctors at the accidents section testified that it was an emergency case, yet she had not been provided with the necessary medical care. As a result the patient’s condition began to deteriorate and she finally died one day after being admitted to the hospital,” he added.
Al Murooshid pointed out that the DHA started investigating the case immediately on receiving a complaint from the deceased’s family.
“This decision does not forfeit the right of the family members of the deceased child from filing a separate case in the court and demanding for compensation,” he said.
“The DHA has a transparent policy to deal with all complaints related to medical negligence or malpractice,” added Al Murooshid.
According to him, the decision to remove the Arab female doctor was taken after a through investigation by two committees, one of which was formed by the DHA. The medical file of the victim was reviewed and the committees also noted down testimonials of the medical treating staff.
“Accordingly, they concluded that the death resulted from negligence of SSM. Upon the findings of the investigations, the DHA withdrew the medical licence of SSM and reported her to be enrolled on the list of doctors banned to practice medicine in the UAE. The authority terminated her contract as well,” he elaborated.
Sources at the DHA revealed that a total of 51 complaints and cases of medical negligence were registered at the health regulation department in 2009 against health service providers in the private sector in Dubai.
“Out of these 51 cases, eight are still under investigation, while eight cases have been closed for reasons such as request of the complainant. The DHA has investigated 35 cases, out of which 14 were found to be incidents of medical negligence, one case was medical malpractice, seven were cases of negligence and malpractice, and 13 were found to be neither negligence, nor malpractice,” disclosed the source.
It added, “The DHA received 18 complaints against public hospitals in 2009, of which one case is still under investigation, three complaints were closed as the complainant did not appear before the committee.”
“Of the remaining 14 cases investigated by the DHA, it was found that there was no negligence or malpractice in six cases, one case was found to be a malpractice case and negligence and malpractice in three cases and the remaining four cases were found to be negligence cases,” elaborated the DHA official.
The health authority has urged the public to contact the Clinical Governance Office of the DHA or alternatively lodge a complaint on toll-free 800 342 or log on to the website

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