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NHS mix-up led to female patient having unnecessary cervical examination

A woman was subjected to an unnecessary invasive procedure in an NHS outpatient clinic after she was confused for another patient, a safety watchdog has found.

The Healthcare Safety Investigation Branch has called for a review of how the NHS can avoid the mishap happening again after investigating the case of a 39-year-old woman who was subjected to an unnecessary cervical examination.

HSIB said a better system was needed as the number of outpatient appointments has increased from 54 million to 94 million during the last 10 years with many clinics carrying out more invasive procedures.

According to its latest investigation, the female patient was attending a gynaecological outpatient clinic for a fertility treatment assessment.

The error happened when she was called through from the waiting room as another patient had a similar sounding name.

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Source: The Independent, 2 June 2021


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