The case from the Ružinov hospital is not completely unique. Although hospitals have detailed procedures for preventing similar errors, they still occur sporadically. At the Nitra Hospital, three years ago, a 75-year-old patient was operated on for the wrong knee. “I do not want and do not want this to happen in Slovak hospitals,” said the then Minister of Health Andrea Kalavská. Heads fell after a medical staff mistake at the hospital. “In the case of the chief operator, termination of employment, and in the case of other medical staff participating in the operation, financial and disciplinary sanctions were accepted,” said hospital spokeswoman Tatiana Timková. They do not avoid mistakes abroad either. Recently, in Austria, an 82-year-old patient was amputated instead of his left leg. The doctor, who marked the wrong limb before the operation, resigned. To ensure that such errors do not occur, hospitals must have a detailed patient safety system in place. Before he reaches the operating table, he goes through several levels of control. “We have a developed procedure for this, there are individual steps in which the patient should be marked with an operation site,” explains Martin Žofčák, head of the orthopedic department at the hospital in Michalovce. According to the data from the documentation, it will be marked with a special marker directly on the patient’s body the day before the procedure. They do a final check just before the operation. They cannot start it until they have read aloud all the important information about the patient to the operating doctor. “The name of the patient, what we are going to do, who is operating, which party and everything will be recorded in the documentation,” says Žofčák. Although the data in the patient’s documentation undergoes a multi-stage check, the result of the operation is always the responsibility of the operating physician. You can watch the report above in the video.
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