A public hospital in Dak Lak Province has admitted that its doctors’ “incapability and irresponsibility” caused a 16-year-old to lose one leg last week after they left her injuries to fester and become gangrenous.
The surgeon in charge, Y Tam, was suspended Tuesday. He said he failed to handle the case properly "because of work pressure."
The girl, whose first name is Vi, was rushed to Cu Kuin District General Hospital after a road accident on her way from school on March 6.
Doctors said she had a bone rupture around the right knee and put her in a cast.
Vi complained that night that the cast was too tight and painful and her leg below the cast was numb.
Her family asked doctors to remove the cast and transfer her to a higher-level hospital, but they refused.
They only removed the cast two days later, and by then the leg was swollen and blistered.
Doctors said the problem was a “slight” one and did not pay much attention to her.
Three days later they transferred her to the provincial hospital, where doctors found the injury had developed gangrene and many veins had ruptured.
So they rushed her to Cho Ray, a leading public hospital in Ho Chi Minh City, where doctors performed an amputation, cutting her leg above the knee, to save her life.
Trang, Vi’s sister, said her mother was constantly crying while her grandfather was in shock.
The family has demanded that the district hospital should provide financial support for the rest of Vi’s life.
Nguyen Van Tam, director of the hospital, admitted that Vi had lost her leg because of the “carelessness, incapability and irresponsibility of the doctors in charge,” local media reported.
The hospital has paid the family a preliminary sum of VND20 million (nearly US$1,000), and would look into the culpability of the people involved, he said.
“We take responsibility for the serious consequences we have caused.”
The Dak Lak health department would also investigate, an official said.