Doctor neglect blamed for loss of boy's leg in central Vietnam

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Health authorities in the central province of Quang Nam have asked a local hospital to punish eight staff members for neglect that caused necrosis in a boy's leg injuries, thereby forcing the removal of the appendage.

Quang Nam health inspectors said in a statement Friday that the eight in charge, including the head of the hospital's surgery department, had failed to follow professional regulations and work ethics.

The department stepped in after Nguyen Nho Cuong, the 46-year-old father of Nguyen Nho Phap, 16, filed a complaint against staff members at Quang Nam General Hospital.

Cuong said his son received a cast at the hospital for his right leg after an accident on May 19 and doctors promised to do further work on him on May 21.

During the interval, the boy was left unchecked, with some nurses only giving him painkillers when the leg became swollen, black and blue, and his toes went numb, he said.

On May 21, he was transferred to Da Nang General Hospital in nearby Da Nang City, where doctors found the leg's main artery had been damaged and thus had not brought blood to the injured parts.

A surgery was performed to remove his leg to protect other parts of the body.

The Quang Nam hospital has offered to provide the boy with free physical therapy, but the family refused.

Cuong said he did not need compensation, but wanted the hospital to admit its responsibility, or face legal punishments.

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