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3 defendants charged in dialysis deaths

Update: March, 20/2018 - 10:00
Patients who survived after a dialysis in Hòa Bình General Hospital were treated at Bạch Mai Hospital. — Photo
Viet Nam News

HÀ NỘI — The People’s Court of Hòa Bình Province has released charges against three accused of the death of eight persons after undergoing kidney dialysis at the provincial General Hospital.

They have been charged with “unintentional killing” and “irresponsible behaviour causing serious consequences.”

The defendants include Bùi Mạnh Quốc, 32, Director of Trâm Anh Water Treatment Co. Ltd; Trần Văn Sơn, 28, staff of the department of material and medical equipment at Hòa Bình Province General Hospital; and Hoàng Công Lương, 32, a doctor at the intensive rehabilitation ward of the artificial kidney department at Hòa Bình Province General Hospital, reported Tiền Phong (Pioneer) newspaper.

According to the judicial body, Quốc directly repaired and maintained the RO water purification system No. 2 of the artificial kidney department. In the process, he used a mixture of hydrofluoric acid and hydrochloric acid to clean the membrane casings (these are chemicals not listed in the list of chemicals used in medicines). Due to his negligence, a large residue of chemicals was left behind in the water system. He also failed to get the water tested as per regulation.

Sơn was assigned to inspect and supervise the maintenance of the water purification system, but he was not present.

On the afternoon of May 28, 2017, the water from the RO system was handed over to the nurse of the artificial kidney department. Sơn knew that Quốc had not got the water tested, but he did not report this to his senior.

On the morning of May 29, Quốc started the RO system for use. Sơn was present at the artificial kidney department but he ignored the fact that the water was being used for dialysis without being tested.

Nephrologist Hoàng Công Lương, 31, was said to have been assigned by the department head to lead the artificial kidney department. The indictment said as the person in charge, Lương should have known the regulations for qualified water used for dialysis. But Lương didn’t check or report back to the department head.

Soon after the dialysis, eight of the patients reported nausea, abdominal pain and shortness of breath. They died the same day of suspected anaphylactic shock. Ten other patients who had undergone dialysis were transferred to Hà Nội’s Bạch Mai Hospital for emergency treatment and were stabilised.

The families of the victims filed a lawsuit against the hospital and asked for compensation. They complained that the hospital did not comply with regulations for dialysis and violated professional ethics. — VNS



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